An Ikeja High Court on Friday sentenced Lekan Shonde, a dockworker who killed his banker wife, Ronke, 36, at their residence in Egbeda, Lagos three years ago to death, by hanging.
Justice Josephine Oyefeso while delivering judgement on the celebrated case, found shonde guilty of one count charge brought against him by the Lagos State government.
Justice Oyefeso held that the prosecution has proved his case beyond reasonable doubt pointing out that the circumstantial evidence is clear that the deceased is defendant wife and they have two children.
“I cannot but hold that the sudden provocation, the heat of passion and the retaliation, the violence used by the convict was in excess of a reasonable man,” the court ruled.
Justice Oyefeso, in sentencing Shonde, father of two to death, took judicial notice of the analyses of the pathologist Dr Shokunle Shoyemi that examination revealed old and fresh injuries on the deceased.
She held that the bruises on the deceased cheek, blood collection in the brain, brain swelling and other multiple injuries could not have been self- inflicted injuries.
“The defendant in the case was very economical with the truth when he stated that he only slapped her when he overheard his wife on a phone call, praising the sexual prowess of a lover.
“This does not march the degree of autopsy report.
“In the light of overwhelming evidence against the defendant, the court is satisfied that the prosecution has proved its case beyond reasonable doubt.
“The act was intentionally done. I found the defendant guilty.”
Justice Oyefeso held that, section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State 2015 prescribed that the person who commits murder shall be sentenced to death
“In line with section 223 of the Criminal Law of Lagos 2015, this is the sentence of the court upon you Olalekan Shonde that you are to hang in the neck until you are dead. May the Lord have mercy on you,” she said.
Ronke Shonde’s lifeless body was discovered in their apartment on May 6, 2016, and Shonde was charged for alleged murder.
He was arraigned on October 24, 2017, by the Lagos State government.
The prosecution alleged that Shonde committed the offence at 8:30 p.m on May 5, 2016, at his residence in Tiemo Street, Egbeda, Lagos.
During the trial, the prosecution called six witnesses and tendered various exhibits.
However, Shonde in his defense told the court he legally married to Ronke, his wife whom he was referring to as “Adunni” was sleeping on the couch in the sitting room with her phone while he was leaving home on that day of the incident.
He had told the court that he heard his wife speaking to one Kayode on the phone a day to her death, telling him how sweet he made love to her.
He slapped her on the wall.
In his allocutus, Sonde, through his counsel, A. Mohammed pleaded for mercy.
“My Lord, there are two children of the marriage. I know, as a matter of fact, these two children have passed through a worse moment of their life, agonies that are immeasurable.
“I know if these two children have any control in this proceeding, it will be that their father should not be prosecuted at all, but since this is not, I wish to plead with the court that their father be sentenced on a very liberal term.
“The defendant has no criminal record. He has developed series of failing health since his detention.
“This defendant hardly seems very well again, he sees faintly. My Lord, he is hypertensive as he stands there and the authority of the prison can confirm.”