Prior to her disappearance, she had been very vocal on social media about the maltreatment she faced during her 22 year marriage to her estranged husband, David Aiyedogbon who also was her partner in running a chain of businesses known as Charvid.
So when news broke about her disappearance, David was the first suspect. A legal activist group on Facebook known as The Due Process Advocates (DPA) were forced to take on the case after friends of the 43 year old missing woman raised an alarm that foul play was involved in her disappearance.
DPA founder, Barrister Emeka Ugwuonye led investigations which pointed to the fact that Chacha must be dead. Ugwuonye also named Chacha’s estranged husband, David, as the primary suspect.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, the lawyer said new facts in the investigations show that David could not have murdered his wife, rather it was the missing woman’s lover…a guy in his 20s…who is the chief suspect in her murder.
Read what he wrote…
27TH JULY, 2016 UPDATE IN THE CASE IN THE CHACHA
INTRODUCTION: Some who read this update are very likely to misunderstand it, especially those who have had a certain mindset all along or those who got embroiled in personal angst over issues. At any point in an investigation, the investigator looks at evidence and draws conclusions based on the available evidence. An investigation is not really over until a case is submitted to the jury or the judge. Until judgment, new evidence remains admissible and each new evidence may affect conclusions. Even at this moment, nobody has been ruled out as a suspect.
MAIN TEXT: It became necessary for me to make this update because I noticed an effort by Madam Pamela to report on the latest happening in the case of Charity Aiyedegbo. (In particular, a few hours ago, Madam Pamela posted an apparently sponsored piece on her wall trying to shed light on the case of Chacha).
Last week, there were certain developments which led us to the man we believed killed Chacha, based on what we call evidence of opportunity. That is, he had the opportunity of killing Chacha that night. We however have been working hard to explain his motives for killing Chacha. I did not want to give out details becase the police needed to reach the man and since I was also pursuing the man and was even closer to reaching him than the police were, the last thing I wanted was to give out information that would lead him to widen the gap between him and the police or between him and us. So, I did not give details.
However, in view of the snippet of information that Madam Pamela has been commissioned to peddle tonight, I am forced at this point to say more than I had told you previously.
The vehicle of Chacha was found in possession of her 24-year old boyfriend or male companion. She took a picture in that car, sitting in front passenger seat, the day she went missing. The boyfriend also had two of Chacha’s phones. The young man gave one of those two phones to his mother, who was using in Enugu State. The young man lived in Abuja in what may appear to be in-and-out-of-town squating in a relative’s house in Abuja. Chacha met him on Facebook two years ago (when he was 22 years old). Now he is 24. Chacha was 43. Indeed, part of what we have known for some time now, but which we did not bother to raise because it was not really critical at that stage of our investigation, was that Chacha had close and sexual relationships with various young men prior to her death. That of course complicated investigation as it created opportunities for diversion and misdirection of the investigative trails. (Refer to my first post on this case on June 13, 2016. I then pointed at Chacha’s social media contacts as a probably direction to look).
Right from the beginning, we knew that Chacha’s car must be somewhere. That car is a modern and trackable car. Its ultimate location would not be difficult to find. We also knew that someone was still using Chacha’s phones to make calls. And we knew that the police would eventually get to those items. The point of departure was that Chacha’s husband and his friends argued that because her car was still being driven and because her phones were still being used, it meant that she was alive. We, on the other hand, knew that the person or persons that killed Chacha forced her to give them her Facebook password, and that they would also have taken her car and phones. So, the fact that her car was driven and her phone used did not prove she was alive.
Also, after we were able to identify the headless body discovered on 12th May as Chacha’s body, the theory that she was alive and hiding became totally untenable. Her husband and family however stuck to that theory. Also, Chacha’s lawyer, Mr. Udoh, complicated the investigation for the police by lying that he saw Chacha in his office on May 18. But as we knew, that turned out to be Mr. Udoh’s desperate effort to conceal the fact that he wrongly appended Chacha’s signature on an affidavit he filed for Chacha on the 19th of May. (Mr. Udoh finally admitted to lying to the police on that point and he got detained overnight for that).
Following dramatic events of last week and the new evidence we spoke about, we knew we were close to the person that actually killed Chacha. The evidence of opportunity was strong. We knew that Chacha’s husband was not the one that actually killed her. And that was why I indicated last week that the evidence was pointing in a different direction. But from an investigative standpoint, the fact that we found the person that killed Chacha did not cause a dramatic change in some of our past conclusions. We needed the evidence of motive to determine whether that man acted alone or whether he was commissioned to do what we now believe he did.
I lessened my focus on Chacha’s husband. A significant doubt was introduced into our earlier conclusions. However, without that evidence of motive confirmed, I had to be cautious in exonerating anybody that I had previous considered a suspect. Also there were other factors which I still cannot reveal now.
What we noticed this night in the effort of Madam Pamela was not surprising. We believe that Pamela was always working to exonerate David. She was working for David. There is nothing wrong with that, except that she presented to be working to find justice for Chacha and she continued to try to meddle with my investigation. So, what Madam Pamela did was that she shared publicly information that she got from David or David sources. And her aim is to again suggest that Chacha is alive and hiding, and that if at all she is not, then it is someone else other than David that did it.
Well and good for David. And really, if he is not responsible for his wife’s killing, I can understand the desperation. But he could have done it much better. I had the opportunity to sit with David during a conference with the police in Abuja. He is quite a fellow. I told him that I was a professional and that I had nothing personal and that I was following evidence as it led. I made it clear to him that the motive evidence left him clearly as the greatest beneficiary of the sudden death of Charity. I also made it clear to him that should the evidence suddenly point in another direction I would be able to admit that. And I did admit that last week, though not totally.
So, the information Madam Pamela is sharing is not really as weighty as she wants it to be. She is peddling what David gave her. That is why she is not telling you the source of her information and she is not either a professional or an investigator in this case. But this is something we have always known. The thing Pamela and David do not know is everything else important. We know where the young man is. He almost came to my office last week because he had agreed to surrender himself to the police. He contacted me on the phone and told me that someone told him to reach me if he wanted to stay alive. I understood what that meant. It meant that so much would depend on that young man staying alive and telling what really happened. As he was running from the police, he risked being killed and if killed the truth would never be known. So as a lawyer and as an internationally trained crime investigator, I knew that I had to keep that boy alive. I therefore advised him to show up in my office so that I would properly surrender him to the police in the presence of the press. I wanted to make sure he was seen by the press as not resisting arrest and as being in good health. I also wanted to obtain his statement before he would go into custody. These are essential steps that a lawyer in my position could take to preserve and protect evidence and keep a witness alive.
At the same time, I had to make sure that what I was doing was right and consistent with the law. Thus, I immediately contacted the police to inform them that I was in touch with him and that he wanted to surrender. I also requested the officers to assure me he would be safe and that his due process rights would be observed. The officers assured me. We then began to make arrangements for his surrender. But unfortunately, last minute, the young man changed his mind and stayed on the run. We know where he is and the police know what I know. To avoid another allegation of concealment, I have kept the officers in the know of what we know.
So, those reading the post of Pamela concerning Chacha’s car should not really attach too much meaning to it. That information had always been there. And certainly, David, Chacha’s husband need not worry too much. The world would get to the root of what happened. If he has no involvement in the matter, that will be obvious. As of today, I cannot speak with the same degree of certainty as of two weeks ago that he did it. But it will be wrong for me to say now that he has no responsibility for it. He remains within the pool of suspects, as per my investigaition, though not as focal as he was two weeks ago.
Again, this is a complex case. I am happy that DPA cracked the case. Even as of this moment, DPA is leading and the police are following very well and quite impressively. In the end, the authority and power belong to the police. We are just using our skills to assist the police. I believe the police appreciate what we have done. I understand, however, that in this part of the world, we cannot expect the police to come publicly and give us credit for what we have done. Hopefully, the young man will surrender and explain to the world what happened in the last hours of Charity’s life.
Someone among my readers must ask, I can assume: Could Charity be alive? The answer is definitely No. The last possibility of that was destroyed when this young man went on the run. If Charity was alive, she would be with him. And if he is now on the run, it is because Charity is not with him and he understands why. He did explain to me over the phone certain events that occurred from 6pm to 9pm on 9th May, when according to him he dropped off Charity at Sheraton Hotel. Of course, I did not buy that. But I did buy that he was with Charity in her last hours.
More updates will come. But we are very close to the truth, which is what all of you have wanted.