Notorious Port Harcourt rapist and serial killer, Gracious David-West, was on Friday sentenced to death by hanging by a Rivers State High Court.
The Port Harcourt serial killer, David-West was found guilty for the murder of nine young women and attempted murder of a tenth, Benita Etim, in different hotel rooms across Rivers State between July and September 2019.
Delivering judgment on the case, Presiding Judge, Hon. Justice Adolphus Enebeli, found the serial killer guilty on the charges against him, saying that the convict will be hanged by the neck till he is dead.
When the convict was arrested and paraded by the police in September 2019, he confessed to killing seven young women; one in Lagos; one in Owerri, Imo State; and five in Rivers State.
The second defendant in the case, Nimi ThankGod, a manager of one of the hotels in Port Harcourt where one of the victims was killed, was however acquitted and discharged by the Court on grounds that the state prosecuting counsel failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused committed the offence.
ThankGod, who faced a one-count charge bordering on misconduct with a corpse, was accused of evacuating the corpse of one of the young females killed in her hotel room where she served as a manager and dumped the body at a dumpsite along Aggrey Road in Port Harcourt in August 2019.
Counsel to David-West, Vincent Chukwu, had pleaded with the Court for leniency on the grounds that his client is a father of three young children.
However, the state prosecuting counsel, Chidi Ekeh, said the first defendant (David-West) does not deserve any leniency as he did not show mercy to his victims and urged the Court to ensure justice in the matter.
Speaking with journalists outside the courtroom, the lead state prosecuting counsel, Chidi Ekeh, said the judgment would serve as a deterrent to other persons with such intensions of crime, adding that the second defendant was let go because it was difficult to prove to the court that the accused committed the crime.
Ekeh said: “With respect to the second defendant, she escaped by the whiskers, not that the offence with which she was charged was not committed, but it was difficult to determine who exactly did it as the witnesses who would have ordinarily provided that answer suddenly disappeared from the state until date.
“I am happy that this judgment was given, it would serve as a deterrent to all such persons with such disposition who are always taking to crime to know that their consequences.”