The wife of late Police Inspector, Francis Adekunle on Tuesday narrated to Justice Hakeem Oshodi of the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja how her husband’s colleague, a Sergeant, Ukeme Asuquo, allegedly killed him with a machete over a minor dispute.
Mrs Itunnu Adekunle, who was testifying as a witness in the trial of her husband’s alleged killer claimed that Asuquo allegedly committed the crime after the deceased intervened in the dispute between her and the defendant two years ago.
The Lagos State government is trying the defendant on a one-count charge of murder contrary to Section 223 of the Criminal Law, Ch. C17, Vol.3, Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
Asuquo, attached to the Anti-Cultism Unit of the Lagos State Police Command, allegedly attacked Inspector Adekunle, who was attached to the Special Protective Unit, Ikeja, with a machete in their compound at, 1 Oyedeji Close, Agbelekale in Aboru area of Lagos, where they both resided.
While being led in evidence as the first prosecution witness, Mrs Adekunle told the court that the tragic incident happened around 8 pm on June 4, 2020.
The witness said it all started when the defendant called her while he was burning some refuse outside their compound and she refused to answer him because she felt he had no reason to summon her.
She testified that the development got the defendant angry as he locked the compound’s gate against her and an attempt by another tenant, Ayodele Eyitayo to open the gate for her was challenged by Asuquo.
Mrs. Adekunle also stated, “Upon hearing my cry for help to gain access into the compound, my husband came down to separate Asuquo and Eyitayo and opened the gate for me. After our co-tenant went into his apartment, Asuquo went in as well but came out with a machete and chased after me and my husband.
“We ran in different directions and after a while, one of our neighbours came back to inform me where I was hiding that my husband had been struck with the machete.
“So I rushed to the scene and found my husband in a pool of his blood, he was rushed in a tricycle to the hospital where he died on the third day and the matter was reported at Panti police station,” she said.
The second prosecution witness, Ayodele Eyitayo in his evidence, told the court that after the deceased separated the argument between him and the defendant, he went back into his apartment.
Eyitayo further stated that he later saw the defendant through his window chasing after the couple with a machete and thereafter he destroyed his window net in an attempt to attack him too.
He claimed, “I called the police at Ilepo station to inform them about Asuquo’s threat and the defendant ran away. So I quickly went to open the gate for the policemen and thereafter was informed that the defendant had macheted the deceased,” the witness claimed.
The third prosecution witness, Taiwo Oluwatuyi also told Justice Oshodi that despite his plea for mercy, the defendant refused to stop hitting the deceased with the machete.
Oluwatuyi testified, “I went out to spread some clothes when I heard the wife of the deceased shouting so I approached the defendant to have mercy on the deceased. He cut me with the weapon and charged after us. We fell by the well in my compound. The defendant met us there and began to strike the deceased with the weapon.
“Despite my plea, the defendant continued to machete the deceased. I couldn’t endure the horrible site so I ran off to get help and the defendant ran into their compound and shut the gate when I came back with some boys,” he stated.
The fourth witness that testified in the case was the medical doctor who treated the deceased.
The trial judge, Justice Oshodi, adjourned the matter to October 17 for the continuation of the trial.
The charge against the defendant reads, “That you Asuquo Ukeme on or about the 4th day of June 2020 at about 20:00 hours at 1, Olajide Close, Agbelekale, Aboru, Lagos State, in the Ikeja Judicial Division, did unlawfully killed one Adekunle Ilesanmi (M) by hacking him with a machete.”