Police arrest woman over house help’s suspicious death in Lagos

Personnel of the Lagos State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department , Panti , Yaba , have commenced investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of a house help, Joy James , by arresting her boss , Fortune Nwankwo .

Reports gathered that Fortune was arrested on the suspicion that she staged the victim ’ s suicide at her place of residence on Ogundola Street in the Bariga area of the state .

Fortune had reported at the Bariga Police Division on Monday that Joy hung herself to a fan in her room.

It was learnt that policemen , who were detailed to the scene of the incident, observed some marks on Joy’ s body and after a critical analysis of the crime scene and the corpse , suspected a case of murder.

The corpse was evacuated to the Yaba General Hospital for autopsy , while Fortune was apprehended and the case transferred to the SCIID for further investigation .

Fortune denied the allegation that she killed the victim , adding that Joy had already made up her mind to stop working for her , but could not leave her house because of the lockdown .

She stated, “An agent , Johnson Odewu, brought Joy to work in my place on January 10, 2020 .

She worked with my family for a while , but all of a sudden , she became reluctant to work ; so , on April 9 , I spoke with her and involved her relative , Blessing , who told her to behave .

“ But when nothing changed , I decided that she should go and gave her N 15 , 000 as her salary. She left around 7 am.

“ I was cooking when my husband told me that Joy was still around and when I spoke to her , she said she could not get a vehicle because of the lockdown .

When Blessing , who was waiting to pick her up in Oshodi did not see her , she called and I explained what transpired and we both concluded that Joy should stay with us till the lockdown was over .

“ I later saw that she was eating raw noodles and decided to search her room and that was how I discovered that she had stolen my clothes and my children ’ s toys .

She even hid my clothes underneath hers so that I won ’ t see them when searching , but I found out; if only I can access my phone , I will show you everything .

“So , I brought her to the parlour on Sunday morning , informed her relative and flogged her .

In the night , she refused to eat when I served her . Around 7 am on Monday , I went to check on her but saw that she had hung herself to the ceiling fan and I screamed.

“ My husband rushed out of the room and I quickly alerted my neighbours and we went to report at the police station . I swear on the life of my kids , I was not the one who killed her . ”

When contacted , the state Police Public Relations Officer , Bala Elkana , said the case had been transferred to the SCIID for further investigation , adding that the police suspect a case of murder.

Elkana stated , “ On April 20 , 2020 , One Mr Steven Nwankwo , 40, reported at the Bariga Police Station that one Joy James killed herself by hanging herself in her room with a belt.

We mobilised to the scene , examined the scene and a critical analysis of the crime scene and the corpse raised suspicions on the possibility of a murder.

“ We have evacuated the corpse to the Yaba General Hospital’ s mortuary for post- mortem , while the complainant and his wife , Fortune, 31 , were transferred to the SCIID for discreet investigation . ”

It was , however, learnt that Steven had been released .

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