Juba: First court hearing held in case of 3 siblings' murders
The first court hearing of a shocking case in which three juvenile siblings were gruesomely slaughtered at their home in Juba’s Rock City suburb took place today at the Juba High Court.
The lead police investigator on the case, Colonel George Lado Wani, started by reading back to the prime suspect, Babu Emmanuel Lokiri, a statement the latter made to a judge confessing to the gruesome crime.
“I am Babu Emmanuel Lokiri, 24 years old and a resident of Rock City, a fourth-year student of the University of Juba, faculty of medicine,” the statement by the suspect read in part. “On Saturday at about midday, I went to the home of my uncle who is close to my mother. I usually go there. When I went there I had a knife with me. When I knocked on the door, the middle daughter of my uncle came and opened the door.”
The statement read, “I found them watching television. I then put my phone to charge. I asked them where their mother was and they said she had gone out. When my phone charged a bit, I pocketed it. They were watching children’s programs and I asked them to change the channel and they refused.”
In what might amount to a confession, the accused’s chilling statement further said, “I then asked them for the television’s remote control unit and they said there was no remote control unit. I then got angry at the second born and cut her on the right side of her neck. She ran in the direction of her bedroom. I followed her and cut her throat. I found the eldest girl in the bedroom and slaughtered her.”
“I also found the young one on the bed sleeping and also cut her throat and cleaned the knife on bedsheets. I then closed the door and walked out. I opened the gate and when there was no one, I opened it and closed it behind me and walked to our home which is just across the road. I then threw the knife away and immediately went to my bedroom,” the statement said.
Asked by the lead police investigator if the statement that was read back to him in court was voluntarily given by the accused to a judge, the accused said yes. Babu Emmanuel confirmed it was his statement.
The mother of the accused, Alice Noel, was also arraigned in court as a co-accused but she denied any involvement. She is accused of attempting to hide evidence and conceal the heinous crime her son committed.
Asked if she washed the blood-stained clothes her son was wearing when he killed the three sisters, she said, “I washed some clothes but the only item among them that belonged to my son was a pair of his shorts. It is not possible that Babu would go to the home of the children in shorts.”
The prosecuting team presented in court exhibits and material evidence like the knife used in the commission of the crime and video clips demonstrating the crime.
Presiding Judge, Duoth Kulang, adjourned the case to next Monday and said there would be hearings on all working days until the case is disposed of.
“The defense and prosecution teams should prepare themselves. I adjourn this case to Monday and we will have hearings every weekday until this case is disposed of,” the judge said.
The siblings, all girls, were identified as Lydia Edward, 9, Blessing Edward, 7, and their 4-year-old sister Nura Edward. They were killed two months ago in a gruesome murder that shocked the nation.