Crime & Punishment of 2014-08-02

Man to hang for killing wife, son

The Ho High Court has sentenced Innocent Dogah Zodzi of Mafi-Tsakpo in the Central Tongu District in the Volta Region to death by hanging for killing his wife and two-year-old son.

The accused had pleaded not guilty to three counts of murder, attempted murder and attempted suicide, but a seven-member jury found him guilty of murder and attempted murder, while the charge of attempted suicide was dropped.

The court, presided over by Mr Justice Patrick Baayeh, accordingly sentenced Zodzi to death by hanging for murder and attempted murder .


Presenting the facts of the case in court, a Senior State Attorney, Mr Simon Adatsi, said Zodzi was married to Madam Joyce Maame Atikpo, who brought into the marriage her four-year-old daughter, to join the couple’s two-year-old son.

He said the issue of the stepdaughter most of the time generated misunderstanding and bitter quarrels between Zodzi and his wife, as he was apparently not happy with the step daughter staying with them and advised the wife to send the girl back to her father.

Mr Adatsi said during one of those misunderstandings, Zodzi threatened to kill his wife and so she packed out of her marital home for her family home, but he later pleaded with her to return.

He said as a result of the intermittent quarrels, in March 2010 Joyce decided to pack her belongings back to the family house, along with her daughter, but in the process of packing, Zodzi returned from town and confronted her.

Angered by his wife’s reaction, he said, Zodzi took a machete from under his bed and killed his wife.

The senior state attorney said Zodzi further inflicted machete wounds on the head of their two-year-old son, who was then strapped to the back of his mother, and also turned his anger on his step-daughter and slashed her left arm and her back.

Mr Adatsi said Zodzi attempted to commit suicide by inflicting several machete wounds on his left arm and went into hiding.

The three victims were rushed to the Adidome Hospital for treatment but the two-year-old son died later on admission, while Zodzi was later arrested from his hideout and rushed to the same hospital where he was treated.

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