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25.11.2008 Social News

Pupil On Murder Charge Freed

A 14-year-old junior high school pupil of Anyrawase, near Ho, who has been on remand for the past three years on a murder charge, has been discharged by an Accra High Court, presided over by Justice Mohammed Naban.

The accused is alleged to have buried her two-week-old baby alive and had been on remand at the Juvenile Remand Home at Osu since January 2005.

Making a request for the discharge of the accused, Mr Seth Agyapong-Mensah, counsel for the girl, said the suspect was staying with her father at Anyrawase when she became pregnant and later delivered.

He said the man responsible for the pregnancy ran away and refused responsibility.

Mr Agyapong-Mensah said on January 1, 2005, the accused left home with the baby without her father's knowledge and on her return the following day the baby was not with her.

He said when the father questioned her on the whereabouts of her baby, she said the child was missing.

He said she told her father that she had placed the child under a palm tree when she was weeding on the farm but when she finished with the weeding she realised that the baby was nowhere to be found. A search party, however, found the baby buried under the palm tree.

She was, therefore, arrested and sent to the police station where she admitted the offence in her caution statement.

Counsel quoted the Juvenile Justice Act, which states that where a juvenile is charged with an offence before a Juvenile court and the case is not completed within six months, the juvenile shall be discharged and will not be liable for any further proceedings in respect of the same offence.

Story by Mavis Jemima Kumi