December 1, 2016 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
The first prosecution witness, Edna Johnson, in the ongoing murder trial involving one Jonathan Decker, who allegedly murdered one Samuel Sulter, yesterday, testified in court how the accused used cutlass to hit her father’s head and eventually killed him.
The accused is in court on a count’s charge of murder, contrary to the laws of Sierra Leone and the prosecution had alleged that he murdered the deceased on 16th December, 2015 in Freetown.
In her testimony before Justice Monfred Sesay after the court had empaneled 12 jurors to seat on the matter, the witness identified the deceased as her father and the accused as her uncle- senior brother to the late man.
She recalled 16 December, 2015 when the deceased asked her younger brother, Patrick Johnson, to clean up a certain mat nearby and that she later overheard some noise coming from the direction where the boy had gone to clean up the said mat.
She told the court that she went to the scene and met the accused shouting at the boy, telling him not to clean up the mat nearby but advised him to take it to a nearby drainage.
According to her, she incited her brother not to adhere to the accused’s caution, but rather advised him to continue his job as they used to clean up the mat at the said location.
She further testified that the accused later threatened to flog her brother should he continue his cleaning exercise, adding that upon that threat, she went and reported the matter to the deceased, who wasted no time but went to the scene and ordered the boy to go ahead and clean the mat.
She said the accused went into his room and brought out with him a cane, while the deceased collected a stick and threatened to hit the accused if he used the cane on the boy.
She continues that as the accused made an attempt to cane the boy, the deceased shoved and prevented him from doing so.
“From that point, I left the scene to collect water for my younger brother. Upon my return, I met one Aunty Melrose holding the accused and advising him not to do anything to my father but he shoved her and hit my father with a cutlass. Blood started oozing from my father’s head while we took him to the hospital,” she said.
She added that at around 3am in the morning, she received a phone call from her mother who informed her that her father has died, adding that she later made statement to the police.
Addressing the judge and members of the jury, State Counsel, E.Y Manner, said the accused was charged to court on a count’s of murder, contrary to law, adding that it was now their duty to prove beyond all reasonable doubt that he is guilty as charged.
He said they have three witnesses who would testify in the matter, plus other additional ones they intend to bring, including the government pathologist.