Oct 14, 2015, 4:11 PM
The protracted murder trial involving Kate Atori West yesterday finally ended before Justice Joseph Wowo of the Banjul High Court with the conviction and sentencing of the convict to life imprisonment.
The convict Kate Atori West, who was standing trial since 2006, was said to have murdered her late husband William West by hitting him with a pestle on the head and thereafter set fire on the body.
Delivering the judgement, Justice Wowo stated that the convict was charged with murder by causing the death of her late husband William West on 18th June 2006, at Sanyang Village. He said the prosecution in a bid to prove their case had called in 14 witnesses, while the defence testified but did not call any witness.
Justice Wowo went on to relate the evidence of the prosecution witnesses and that of the defence and their written briefs.
According to Justice Wowo, after relating the evidence of the prosecution witnesses and that of the defence, together with the exhibits, the issue for determination is whether the convict actually caused the death of the deceased. He added that looking at the evidence of PW8, PW10 and PW13 (the police investigators), it is clear that the convict made a confessional statement, noting that the medical report further supported the case of the prosecution.
He stated further that the evidence of the prosecution witnesses revealed that it was the convict who led the investigators to recover the remains of the deceased.
Justice Wowo further stated that, in light of the totality of the evidence before the court, the court was satisfied that the prosecution had proven their case beyond reasonable doubt and the convict was guilty of the offence charged.
In his plea of mitigation, the Defence Counsel, Lamin Camara stated that the convict is a 29-year-old lady who lived with the deceased in The Gambia for a number of years before the said unfortunate incident. He said the convict was remorseful of what had happened and she was a first time offender. He urged the court to temper justice with mercy.