The police have arrested a 30-year-old motorcycle rider, Garuba Abdulraman, for allegedly defiling a two-year-old, Pat, (pseudonym) in the Somolu area of Lagos State.
PUNCH Metro learnt that Abdulraman, an indigene of Niger State, also kicked the minor’s pregnant aunty, Alimat Muazu, when the later quizzed him on the child’s whereabouts.
The incident happened on Saturday on Ofor Street.
A relative of the victim, who did not identify himself, said the family did a medical test on her and it was discovered that her hymen had been broken.
He added that the hospital subsequently placed her on medication.
He said, “It happened on Saturday, February 21, 2015 around 11.30am.
“Pat’s mother lives in Gbagada, while her sister, Muazu, stays at Somolu. She decided to visit Muazu that day.
“It was during the visit that the girl suddenly went missing and everybody started looking for her.
“But somebody said he sighted Abdulraman, a motorcyclist, taking her away. So, some women trailed the child to an uncompleted building where he lives. When they got there, they met him and he didn’t tell them where the child was.”
PUNCH Metro learnt that there was an exchange of words between the women and the suspect, and in the ensuing scuffle, the suspect kicked Muazu in the stomach.
He was also said to have threatened to use cutlass to hack them if they moved closer.
Our correspondent was told that Abdulraman dared the family to report to the police after which policemen from the Somolu Division were alerted.
A police source told our correspondent that a case of assault was reported at the station.
He said, “When we got there, we found the girl in one of the rooms, in a big bowl of water.
“She could barely move and when she tried, she fell down. She began to cry. We didn’t suspect anything until we saw that her pants and clothes had been washed and hung on the line to dry. The suspect was also not putting on any clothes.”
The police were said to have taken the victim to the hospital where it was confirmed that there was penetration.
Abdulraman was arraigned before an Ebute Meta Chief Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday on four counts of rape and assault.
The suspect, who spoke through an interpreter to the court, confirmed that he assaulted Muazu and threatened to use cutlass on them.
He, however, denied raping the victim.
He said, “I don’t know these people from anywhere. I had gone to their compound when someone said he needed to buy plywoods.
“Pat came near my okada and started playing with it, and those people said I should help them carry her, which I did.
“After they finished buying the plywoods, they said they could still not carry her, because they had a lot of load to carry. They asked me to help them.
“It was while carrying her that she soiled her clothes and I decided to wash it for her. I never had sex with her.”
He added that he was forced to threaten the women with cutlass after they stoned him.
The police prosecutor, Richard Odige, told the court that the offence was punishable under sections 267, 137, 170 and 56 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State Nigeria, 2011.
His defence counsel, F.S. Osordi, applied for bail, for the defendant, asking the court to overlook Abdulraman’s guilty plea to charges of assault and threat to injure with cutlass.
“I am not really sure he understood what he was saying because he told me a different thing before this court sat. We apply that the court should order that count three be read to him again,” he added.
The Chief Magistrate, O. I. Adelaja, however, admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N300,000 with two sureties in like sum.
She said, “The sureties must show proofs of employment, tax payment, and their addresses must be verified.”
The matter was adjourned till April 8, 2015.