From Angela Nkwo-Akpolu, Owerri
A couple in Imo State, Mr Damian and Mrs Prisca David are cooling their heels at the State Police command and explaining how their 13 years old stepdaughter, Veronica David, died in their custody.
The couple hail from Taraba State but live in Ogwuaga -Abba in Nwangele Local Government Area of Imo State, where Mr Damian works as a security guard to a Port Harcourt-based businessman, Johnbosco Ozugbo, in his country home, Ogwuaga.
A villager, Mr Chima Egbu, opined that the murder incident was a case of culpable homicide, as the girl slumped and died following the series of beatings from the couple.
However, in a bid to play smart, they appealed to one Mr John, to assist them to make Veronica’s death look like a suicide, as they tied a rope on the girl’s neck to make it seem she committed suicide in a bid to escape the long arm of the law.
However, eagle-eyed neighbours who suspected foul play alerted the police at Nwangele Divisional Police Headquarters who on their part, immediately arrested the couple upon suspicion of foul play, as well as their helper, Mr John.
Meanwhile, Mr David’s employer, Johnbosco Ozugbo confirmed the development to The AUTHORITY adding that he was worried when his security guard alerted him and alleged suicide.
According to him, David called and requested for salary advance to enable him take his daughter to Taraba State for proper burial, alleging that the little girl committed suicide.
Ozugbo said: “My security guard called me that his step daughter committed suicide and that he needed an advance salary to take her corpse to Taraba for burial, and a few days off. But I was worried on how a thirteen-year-old girl would take her own life. But upon inquiry, I was told that his wife, Prisca, hit the girl with a plank on the head and she died immediately. A boy in the compound told me that he saw the woman hit the girl with the plank.”
Further, he said, “I quickly involved the police and the couple were arrested. The boy who said he saw the woman kill her own step daughter went with them to the police station to put it in writing. The corpse is ready for autopsy, and I will ensure that justice is served”. Ozugbo said.
Meanwhile, the State Commissioner of Police, Mr Chris Ezike has confirmed the incident in a telephone interview, adding that he had ordered the Homicide section of the command to take over the matter.