Liberia: Sen. Dillon’s Brother Acquitted of Murder Charges after Nearly Two Years behind Bars
MONROVIA – After nearly two years of being trapped in a murder allegation, the 13th Judicial Circuit Court of Margibi County today set Oliver Dillon free of the crime of murder.
Oliver is a brother of Montserrado County Senator Darius Dillon.
All 12 jurors, in a unanimous verdict Thursday, January 14, 2021, brought down a not-guilty verdict in favor of Oliver Dillon, something that was subsequently affirmed by Judge Joe Barcon.
“After returning from our room of deliberation and considering the fact, we have resolved and agreed that Oliver Dillon is not guilty of the crime of murder accuse of.”
Judge Barcon declared Oliver a free man predicated on the jurors’ verdict as well as his rights, civil liberty, and bond be restored to him.
Similarly; the Judge dismissed the 60 days jurors facto and lauded them for their hard work, patience, and intelligence using Chapter 20, Section 20.8 of the criminal procedural law.
Oliver Dillon was on trial for allegedly murdering one Emmanuel Kofi believed to be a zogo (disadvantaged youth) in the Barnesville Community in early April 2019.
He was investigated, charged, and forwarded to court for onward prosecution and was subsequently indicted in November 2019 by the Grand Jury of Montserrado County for the crime of murder.
The matter should have been heard in Montserrado as per the law of territorial jurisdiction since that was where the incident occurs, but this was changed and the matter transferred to Margibi predicated upon a motion for a change of venue filed by Government lawyers on grounds that the deceased could not have had fair justice where the case to be held in Monrovia.
“Political and public sentiments clouded the case thus forcing the delay of Justice for Oliver”, a supporter and sympathizer of Oliver Dillion stated.
The trial in this matter officially commenced on November 16, 2020, with the selection of fifteen men jurors panel to preside and make a determination into the matter to either hold or free the defendant of the crime accused of.
During the trial, the prosecution produced three witnesses to include: Alvin Page and George Quaye to testified to their setting knowledge of the crime committed by Oliver in April 2019 as well as to produce the murder weapon used during the incident.
County Attorney Edwin Kla Martin in his final presentation Thursday noted that the defense argument of self-defense violates the theory of self-defense on grounds that under the law one should be in an eminent danger or provoked which was never the case in this matter.
Martin maintained that Oliver was never provoked or in any eminent danger as the law provides and that the action by Dillon was not equal to that of the deceased saying “He just saw group of people coming to him and concluded they were criminals and strive Emmanuel Kofi.”
Atty Martin pleaded with the jurors and the Honorable Court to hold Dillon liable for taking the life of a harmless man as any verdict on the contrary, the deceased body will continue to cry in the grave.
The County Attorney added that Oliver was never under attack as claimed in his testimony for which he used force against the defendant that led to the deceased death.
Police investigative report that led to the indictment against Oliver acknowledged that the area where the incident occur is heavily infested with criminals and known to be a crime bleeding community where gangs go after peaceful citizens and take away their belongings.
Accordingly; one of Defense Counsel Wilfred Sillah pointed out several contradictions in government witnesses testimonies, something he claimed should work in favor of the defendant.
He noted that there was no autopsy conducted to establish the part of the deceased that was pearls to have resulted to his (deceased) death. Another doubt uncovered by Cllr. Sillah is that fact that the police charge was prepared April 12, 2019 at the 23oo hours, day after the crime was committed (April 13, 2019 1:30Am) which implies that government might had anticipated the incident.
Cllr. Sillah further argued that Alvin Page, a Police examiner who conducted the test on the deceased is not a medical practitioner and should not have been the one to establish the cause of death rather a licensed and professional medical doctor, something that was never done instead he contacted a nurse aid to test the deceased.
Defense Counsel noted that the conduct of the examiner shows that the examination was done on the crime scene and not at Abraham Robert funeral home as mentioned by Alvin Page during his testimony in court which is a strange practice and another reason to render a non-guilty verdict in favor of Dillon.
Sillah noted if Dillon was nerve attacked as claimed by the County Attorney than his client (Dillon) should be sets free because there is nothing for him to be held liable for.
similarly; Sillah pray the jurors and the honorable court to sets his client free of the crime accuse of and return onto him his criminal appearance bond and all order rights and civil liberty be restored as provided for under the constitution.
Story credit: Women’s TV