What truly transpired between a 27-year-old Computer Science graduate of the Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Okonikhere Joy, and her boyfriend on the night of Sunday, December 4, 2016 causing the former’s death may never be known.
But this much is clear: That night, there was a scuffle between them at a hotel in Orile area of Lagos. By morning, Joy’s corpse was discovered by workers at the hotel, prompting them to alert the police. But the unidentified boyfriend was in the wind.
Saturday Punch learnt that when the workers at the hotel made the discovery, they recalled noticing that there was a scuffle inside the hotel room where Joy and her boyfriend lodged the night before. When the case was reported to the police, a manhunt was instantly launched for the suspect.
Two suspects have been arrested by the police. One of them is the purported boyfriend, who has not been identified by the police.
A police source told Punch that a CCTV showed the suspect leaving the hotel.
One of Joy’s friends, May Ebute, said, “I just spoke with her brother and he confirmed the news. The murderer is presently cooling off in a police cell. I wish l could find the words to express the anger l am feeling right now,” she said.
The suspect told the police that he indeed had a fight with the deceased, Saturday Punch learnt.
He explained during interrogation that he grabbed the neck of his girlfriend during the disagreement and that he did not mean to kill her.
“I just put my hands on her neck to scare her, but she stopped breathing,” he was quoted as saying.
Joy, an Edo State indigene, was said to have graduated in 2014 and came to Lagos to look for a job.
When Saturday Punch spoke with the father of the deceased on the phone , Mr. Friday Okonikhere, there was no doubt that he was still grief-stricken.
He said, “I have never heard of the boy before. I think they must have met in Lagos. The police said they had acquired a CCTV footage that showed the perpetrator of the crime. But they have not shown it to me.
“She told me she was working in Lagos. Joy came to Lagos in search of a job. Her mother died four years ago. My daughter’s life is like a total waste now. At the moment when her life would have started becoming a glory, she was wasted.
“I feel very bitter and angry. I am looking at myself as a failure right now because I don’t know what I could have done to prevent my first daughter from being killed in such a way. I have been told there is going to be an autopsy soon. Once the autopsy is done, hopefully they would release the body to us.”
The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Dolapo Badmos, said investigation was still ongoing in the case but confirmed that two suspects are currently in police custody.