Nkem Ejelonu, a police officer on Tuesday told a Lagos State Special Offences Court how an alumnus of the University of Lagos, John Otema, allegedly raped a student of the institution and stole her underwear.
Otema, who is facing three counts bordering on rape and assault occasioning harm, contrary to sections 173 and 260 (1) (2) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015, was accused of raping two students of UNILAG.
Otema was alleged to have on January 17, 2018, had unlawful sexual intercourse with student ‘X’ around the Distance Learning Institute on the UNILAG campus and also physically assaulted the victim by hitting her several times on the face, strangling her and biting her back; while on January 31, 2018, at his home at No. 6 Ajileye Street, Bariga, Lagos, he also had sexual intercourse with student ‘Y’ without her consent.
At Tuesday’s proceedings, Ejelonu told the court how a search warrant was executed following an allegation of underwear theft by one of the victims. Ejelonu, while being led in evidence by the prosecutor, Arinola Momoh-Ayokanbi, said, “The then Divisional Police Officer of the Adeniji Adele Police Station, Ayodele Onujose, detailed me and Sergeant Osasua. We went to UNILAG and saw the school counsellor and we went to the security cell and we saw the two girls, who were about 19 year’s old.
“Student ‘X’ said the defendant left with her pants, bra and handkerchief after he had raped her in his car. I went to the Igbosere Magistrates’ Court to sign a search warrant on February 6, 2018.
“We went to the defendant’s house at No. 6 Adeleye Street, Bariga, Lagos, to execute the search warrant and the items were not found in his apartment; we found only kitchen knives; and on February 7, 2018, the case was charged to court.
“I had earlier visited the scene of the incident, which is the area near the Distance Learning Institute of UNILAG, to check if I could find the pants, bra and handkerchief, but I could not find anything, hence the search of his house.”
Narrating to the court how the other victim, also a student of the institution, was raped, Ejelonu said, “Student ‘Y’ said sometime in 2018, she saw the defendant on the campus and they went to the canteen to buy food; the defendant went to the bank to withdraw money and refunded N2,000 for the meal.
“Both of them became friends; she told the defendant that she already had a boyfriend but he said that they should be friends with benefits and she demanded a laptop and the defendant gave her N20,000 with the promise to give her N30,000 later.
“On January 30, 2018, the defendant picked her up and took her to his house on the grounds that he wanted to sleep with her but she resisted and demanded N100,000 from the defendant. The defendant had sex with her, took her bag and dropped her off on the campus around 11.30pm.”
Under cross-examination by Otema’s counsel, Fred Onyeka, the IPO revealed that the defendant’s car was still in police custody. The presiding judge, Justice Abiola Soladoye, adjourned the matter till May 9 for continuation of trial.