The murder trial of Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Drambi Vandi, accused of shooting Lagos-based lawyer Bolanle Raheem on Christmas Day, has seen the Lagos State Government close its case.
The prosecution called on the pathologist Dr Oluwaseun Williams to testify, and he was led in his testimony by the Lagos State Solicitor General & Perm Sec, Ms Titilayo Shitta-Bey.
During his testimony, Dr Williams informed Justice Ibironke Harrison that his team invited the deceased’s husband, Gbenga, and the investigating police officer to identify the corpse.
Following this, they proceeded with an internal examination and recorded various injuries, which were mainly on the anterior chest and on the left auxiliary fold. Dr Williams clarified that the injuries were external to internal, resulting in multiple defects.
“On internal examination, there were multiple visceral injuries, specific ones, which include multi rib fractures, multiple injury to the intercoastal spaces, and injury to both lungs.”
“The examination conducted on the deceased, established three factors as the cause of Bolanle Raheem’s death which are; haemorrhagic shock; destruction of the chest visceral and musculoskeletal tissue,” the pathologist said.
The pathologist also mentioned in his testimony that the postmortem report confirmed the deceased was pregnant, adding that the gun shot was at a close range.
Under cross examination, the defence counsel, Adetokunbo Odutola asked the witness if could determine through his postmortem report, the person who pulled the trigger that killed the deceased, to which the witness said, ‘no’.
Mr Odutola also contended that the expert witness based his postmortem records on media reports, but he responded that all conclusions were made on findings discovered at the autopsy.
Dr Williams said the degree of explosive force of a bullet discharged from an AK-47, is thousands of the magnitude of a fire hose, that will penetrate into the body, whether the individual is standing or sitting.
After his testimony, the court discharged the witness and the prosecution closed its case.
The defence counsel, then requested for leave to file a ‘no case submission’ seeking to quash the charge against the defendant.
Following his submission, Justice Harrison ordered both counsel to file their motions and written addresses and adjourned to February 28, 2023 for the adoption of the court processes.
The case has been closely watched by many Nigerians, who are concerned about the high rate of domestic violence and the need for accountability in such cases. The prosecution’s decision to call an experienced pathologist as their final witness highlights the seriousness with which the case is being taken. Justice Harrison is expected to give her ruling in due course.