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General News of Tuesday, 29 January 2019


Midland Assault case: Police are telling lies - Sampson Ayenini

Private Legal Practitioner, Sampson Ayenini Private Legal Practitioner, Sampson Ayenini

Lawyer for the woman allegedly assaulted at the Midland Savings and Loans Company last year has expressed surprise at the discharge of the policeman for want of prosecution by the Circuit Court in Accra.

Police prosecutors were said to have claimed the victim, Ms Patience Osafo, was not interested in the assault case against the accused, Lance Corporal Frederick Amanor Godzi, aka Skalla, but her lawyer, Samson Lardy Ayenini, has rejected the prosecutors claim.

The prosecutors were said to have claimed Ms. Osafo had lost interest in the trial of the policeman and three other officials of Midland. She was said to have failed to appear in court on multiple times leading to the request for Skalla’s discharge.

However, Mr. Anyenini said Tuesday that the claim by the Police that his client was no more interested in the case is “palpable falsehood,” and explained that for the about five months that the case was in court, police prosecutors and investigators kept Ms. Osafo in the dark on what was happening.

“If the state through the police are not interested, they should say they are not interested but not say she [Ms Osafo] is not interested.

According to the lawyer, who was speaking on Citi FM Tuesday, it was when the case was going to be put before court that his client was informed of the date, noting even that, it was a day to the court hearing when she was informed.

He said Ms Osafo who was at the time in Kumasi attending to a sick relative, could not make it to Accra to attend the court hearing.

Since that day, the lawyer said neither the prosecutors nor investigators in the case informed Ms Osafo about adjourn dates or developments in the case until Monday when news broke that Skalla was in December 2018. “This morning, she was very, very unhappy about the development as was told in the news because it is untrue,” Mr. Anyenini stated.

He suggested what the police did in the case was cover up of their own because even looking at the facts, the policeman should have been charged with felony as against the misdemeanour charges given him.

“From the facts we know, he was to face more than a mere assault, but because it was the police that was doing the case against their colleague, they obviously looked the other way and did not pay attention to the most important felony charges; multiple felony charges, including the felony of causing harm with the potential of 10 years in jail.

Ms Osafo was at the time of the alleged assault, carrying a baby
“It was possible; they could have added a charge of exposing the baby to danger, which is also in our criminal process. If you watched the video, you saw the child was exposed to danger…clear danger, [yet] they [the Police] didn’t do all of these,” the lawyer indicated.

Case not totally closed yet

Notwithstanding the discharge of the accused persons, Mr. Anyenini stated the case is still open and that they four persons could still be arrested and tried if the state is so minded.

“It is possible to put the case back. Obviously, the AG may be listening or the department may be listening. They could take a decision that the Police have been rather abysmal in their approach and that they want to take it over and assign a state attorney to it”.

Meanwhile he said he would confer with Ms Osafo on the next line of action to take, particularly on a possible civil case against the Police and the policeman who allegedly assaulted his client.

“She would consider her other option as far as the civil process is concerned,” he stated.