Rivers State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has convicted and sentenced a serial killer, Gracious David-West to death by hanging for murdering over nine women in different hotels in the state and in Lagos State.
Gracious, who was charged with 10 counts of murder and attempted murder, carried out the crime between July 30 and September 19, 2019, before he was arrested in a hotel in Oyigbo Local Government Area of the state while attempting to kill another lady.
He lured his victims to hotels and strangled them to death after sex. According to reports, David-West used white cloth to tie the hands and legs of his victims, increased the television set to the highest volume and then strangled them before carting away their valuables.
Delivering judgment in the matter, Justice Adolphus Enebeli said David-West should be hanged on his neck until he is dead, insisting that the prosecution was able to prove its case beyond reasonable doubts with the evidence brought before the court.
Justice Enebeli, who relied on voluntary statement and confession of the convict as well as the CCTV footage, which was tendered and displayed as evidence during trial to arrive at his judgment, said the evidence proved that David-West was guilty of the crime.
The Judge, however, discharged and acquitted the second defendant, Nimi ThankGod, who was accused of dumping the remains of one of the victims of the serial killer in a dustbin, saying the prosecution was unable to prove that the second defendant actually committed the crime.
Throughout the trial, nobody turned up in court for David-West or for the victims. It was also learnt that no one turned up at the morgue to claim the bodies of the women strangled to death by the convict.
David-West, a 26-year old from Buguma Local Government Area of Rivers State, was to be arraigned on October 22, 2019 but the absence of his lawyer, Vincent Chukwu, frustrated his arraignment.
When the case was called up the following day, October 23, he pleaded guilty to nine murder charges against him and not guilty to the charge of attempted murder of the victim who survived his attack.