Former OSD (Operational Support Division) Police Officer John Patrick Bangura continued his testimony before Justice Cosmotina Jarret, where he underwent cross-examination by the prosecution lawyer, Yusif Sullaman Koroma.
When asked by Koroma if he had provided a statement to the police at the Police Training School (PTS), Bangura responded affirmatively. He informed the court that he had reported a dispute involving the land they purchased to the Anti Land Grabbing Unit of the police. The matter was resolved between both parties with the advice that anyone unsatisfied should seek recourse in court.
Bangura elaborated that the owner from whom they bought the land had informed the deceased, Alpha, that the land did not belong to him.
Regarding why he conducted a survey of the land when he knew there was an unresolved dispute, Bangura explained that he believed the matter had been settled following the Anti Land Grabbing Unit’s ruling.
He further informed the court that they had been visiting the land since the ruling of the Anti Land Grabbing Unit, and no one had ever confronted them for the land.
When asked if he was telling the truth, Bangura replied in the affirmative.
Confirming his position at the time of the incident, Bangura stated that he was not too far away, but he could not discern who had pulled the trigger between Alpha and Yillah.
When questioned about why he had previously told the court that it was Alpha who had pulled the trigger, he denied making such a statement. Justice Jarret reviewed her records and confirmed that Bangura had not made that claim. The jury of twelve also posed questions to Bangura.
In response, he told the jury that he had been instructing the surveyor to stop work and leave when Alpha and Yillah were fighting for possession of the gun.
He recounted that by the time he rushed to assist Yillah, as he had with Abdulai, the police driver, the gun had been fired once, and shortly afterward, it was fired again, leaving Alpha wounded. Bangura assured the jury that he had witnessed precisely what transpired that day.
When describing the topography of the land to the jury, Bangura explained that it was rocky and sloping.
In response to the jury’s inquiry about which part of the gun Alpha had held while struggling with Yillah, Bangura stated that Alpha had held the tip of the gun. He added that he could not determine who had fired the gun between Alpha and Yillah. The jury requested the court’s assistance in visiting the crime scene for guidance. Both lawyers did not object to the jury’s request.
Justice Cosmotina Jarret adjourned the matter to Friday, September 8th, 2023, after the court had visited the crime scene.