CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE – INTENTION – Circumstance(s) when an accused will be held to have intentionally caused the death of the deceased


“In this case, the appellant cocked his service rifle and fired a shot from the rifle and the bullet hit the tarred road and then ricocheted and hit the deceased in the stomach. The bullet penetrate the stomach of the deceased, indicating the proximity between the appellant and the deceased. The act of the Appellant was deliberate as it is obvious from the records and the entire evidence particularly the evidence of PW1-PW3 that there was an argument between the Appellant and the deceased. That the Appellant was even compelled by PW1, the commander of patrol to enter the vehicle and he complied. Yet when the vehicle was about taking a U-turn to the police station, the Appellant jumped down, went back to the deceased, cocked his rifle and fired. Therefore, the Appellant is presumed to have intended to send the deceased to an untimely death. The apposite maxim is: intention mea impointnamien opera meo- my intention gives a name to my action. It will be unreasonable and hostile for the law to presume otherwise, that is, want of intention in favour of the appellant. See the case of ACHUKU V STATE supra 1109.” Per PETER-ODILI, JSC in AKPAKPAN v. STATE (2021-LCER-40459-SC) (Pp 20 – 21 Paras D – C)

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