A Takoradi District Court presided over by His Worship Thomas Ofidie, has adjourned to February 12, 2018, the case involving a final year GSTS student Lawrence Baidoo who was allegedly shot by a police officer on December 22, 2017.
This is the third time the court has had to adjourn hearing.
The court granted the adjournment request when state prosecutor Inspector Paa Ahinsan, and counsel for the plaintiff Lawyer Ebo Donkor, pleaded with the court to adjourn the case whilst they work to finalize their investigations.
Detective Corporal Adjei Shaibu who came to court amidst heavy police escort, was whisked away into police custody by the SWAT Unit of the Ghana Police Service immediately the court granted the adjournment request.
Some past students of GSTS and some family members were in court to observe proceedings on Tuesday, January 30, 2018.
“We will not sacrifice justice for speed”
Counsel for the plaintiff, Lawyer Ebo Donkoh, speaking to journalists after court proceedings said they were happy the court granted their request because “we cannot afford to sacrifice justice for speed.”
He explained that “this is a serious case where the life of a young promising man has been taken tragically. The case is barely a month old so we cannot sacrifice justice on the altar of speed. We need not to rush. The family is looking for justice. It is not about my satisfaction, but we all want the system to work. We want the rule of law to work.”
Accused counsel unhappy with adjournment
Meanwhile, counsel for the accused, Edmond Aquaahene, was not happy the case had been adjourned three times on grounds of gathering required evidence.
He told reporters after the third proceedings that “I am not happy because this is a matter that the investigation should not be delayed. I do not think that Ghana police do not have what it takes. It’s been a month. At least they should round up their investigation and then send the docket to the AGs Department for advice…I believe they have what it takes to start the case.”
Family members hurl chants of justice at cop
Some family members who are yet to come to terms with why Detective Adjei Shaibu allegedly shot and killed their son, hurled chants of ‘justice’ on the cop, whilst he was being whisked away.
They chanted appellations, calling on God to reveal the truth in the matter.
“God, Show your greatness. Speak on our behalf. Let justice prevail. Do not let the [suspected] killer go unpunished” One woman was heard chanting.
COP uses phone whilst in custody – Lawrence’s family
Some of the family members of the late Lawrence Baidoo alleged that Detective Corporal Adjei Shaibu is allowed to use his personal mobile phone whilst in custody “because he is one of their own.”
They say they suspect he could have his way to conceal vital evidence whist he is able to communicate with the outside world. But counsel for the accused Edmond Acquaahene, debunked the allegations, saying “ I have been speaking to him whilst in custody, but not on his personal phone, but on a visitor’s line. When someone visits him whilst in custody, I speak to him on that line. He does not use his personal phone there,” he said.
Police Service interdicts Detective Shaibu
Meanwhile, the Ghana Police Service has interdicted Detective Corporal Adjei Shaibu.
Counsel for the accused, Edmond Acquaahene, told journalists that his client has been on interdiction.
“He has been interdicted even before our previous court appearance on the 12th January. His salary has been slashed down. He will not be performing his duties as he used to do until this case is over. But that does not mean he seizes to be a police officer.”