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Police officers ordered arrested

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As autopsy implicates officers

By Kruah Thompson (Intern)

The Ministry of Justice has ordered the arrest of three Liberia National Police (LNP) officers in relation to the death of truck driver Alieu Sheriff following an altercation between the deceased and the accused officers in July this year.

Sheriff’s death sparked a series of protests staged mainly by his kinsmen here, compelling police to launch tear gas on 3 August to disperse a crowd that had besieged the premises of the Temple of Justice and the entrance of LNP headquarters on Capitol Hill.

But the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Justice on Tuesday, 31 August 2021 confirmed through a preliminary investigative autopsy report conducted on the remains of the late Alieu sheriff that the victim died an unnatural death, citing blunt force injury at the back of his head. 

The Ministry of Justice has therefore instructed the LNP through Inspector General Col. Patrick T. Sudue to immediately re-arrest officers Samuel N. Borbor, Harris Monger, and Alexander Seakor.

Updating reporters surrounding the late Sheriff’s autopsy report at the Ministry of Information’s special Tuesday press briefing, Cllr. Nyenati Tuan, Deputy Justice Minister for Codification, said that Sheriff died as a result of unnatural causes.

The Acting Minister ordered the immediate re-arrest of the three officers for onward transfer to court for prosecution in keeping with the Constitution and human rights standards.

He continued that should the court determine the existence of a prima facie case against the accused, it shall issue a formal writ of arrest, setting out the charge or charges, and shall provide for a speedy trial. 

Giving a reflection of the incident, Cllr. Tuan explained that after the incident, police officers responded to the National Transit Authority (NTA) yard, and saw the late Alieu sheriff lying on the ground unconscious.

Predicated upon the condition of the victim, Cllr. Tuan said he was rushed to the John F. Kennedy Medical Center where he was pronounced dead on arrival (DOA) by Medical Doctors.

In an engagement with reporters, Mr. Amara M. Forfinnah, official spokesman of the deceased’s family, lamented that the blunt force injury at the back of Mr. Sheriff’s head is due to the electric baton that was used at the back of the deceased’s head.

Forfinnah explained that the first peaceful assembly was organized in early August to draw the government’s attention, adding that if they continue to allow police brutality, it will go across the country very soon and the country will be reduced to a police state.

“We know how police state can end up, we will do everything possible to protect the peace and stability of this country,” he said. 

Forfinnah disclosed that they will continue to talk and peacefully assemble for the government’s attention to be drawn.

He continued that they will do it one thousand times and they will use all means under the law to get the government’s attention in doing the right thing.

Meanwhile, Forfinnah noted that his expectations are that the alleged individuals be charged, sent to court, and sentenced to prison.

He indicated that when the criminal aspect of the case has taken place, the family expects the civil aspect to follow suit.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/liberia-police-launch-teargas-at-angry-protesters/–Edited by Winston W. Parley

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