The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Maitama on Tuesday discharged a 39- year- old man, Matthew Ankyoor, who was charged with the murder of his eight months pregnant wife.
The Police had arraigned Mr Anykoor on a three-count charge bordering on culpable homicide punishable with death.
In previous reports, the police had alleged that on June 5, 2017, at about 8:30 p.m. at Lugbe Area of the FCT, Mr Anykoor caused the death of his wife, Doorsu, an offence punishable under Section 221 of the Penal Code Law.
He was also accused of causing the death of an unborn child by an act amounting to culpable homicide as he on the said day caused the death of an unborn child of his wife, contrary to Section 236 of the Penal Code Law.
Mr Anykoor, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
During the court session on Tuesday, the judge, Peter Affen, while ruling on the no-case- submission filed by Mr Ankyoor, held that the evidence adduced by the prosecution fell short in establishing a prima facie case against the defendant.
The judge held that there was no prima facie case that would warrant calling upon the defendant to enter his defence.
” To do this would be tantamount to imposing on the defendant a misplaced burden of establishing his innocence, which would be inconsistent with the constitutional presumption of innocence under section 36 (5) of the constitution.
“Accordingly, I will and do hereby uphold the no-case- submission and record an order discharging the defendant, Matthew Ankyoor on all three counts of the charge preferred against him, ” he held.
The Prosecution Counsel, Donatus Abah, had earlier informed the court that he was closing his case after calling his last witness, Deborah Samuel, who investigated the matter.
Mr Abah after calling two witnesses informed the court that the witnesses he had intended calling refused to come to court to testify.
He told the court that the prosecution was closing its case.
Following this, the defence counsel, Ocheme Adama, informed the court that his client would not enter his defence after the prosecution closed its case.
Mr Adama said that he intended to file a no-case submission.
Sequel to this, Justice Affen, adjourned the case to August 6, for hearing in the no-case submission.