Nigerian Man, Olubunmi Abodunde Jailed For Life For Beating Wife to Death in UK

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A Nigerian man has been given a life sentence in the UK for killing his wife with a skateboard.

 

He had blamed his loss of control on medication.

According to BBC, Olobunmi Abodunde, 48, admitted to killing Taiwo Abodunde, who suffered “catastrophic brain injuries”, on 28 November last year”.

Abodunde must spend a minimum of 17 years in prison before he can be eligible for parole.

 

The court heard on 27 November, the day before Mrs Abodunde’s death, the couple had a domestic incident and Abodunde was arrested.

 

Ipswich Crown Court heard “a degree of ferocity” was involved in her death at the couple’s family home in Exning Road.

As part of bail conditions, he had been ordered not to contact his spouse.

 

The following morning, Abodunde travelled to the family home to retrieve a mobile phone at about 09:00 BST, the court heard.

 

Mrs Abodunde, a mother of three, had been working overnight as a health care assistant and had been on her way back home.

 

Prosecutor Stephen Spence KC told the court Abodunde was aware of his wife’s shift pattern and CCTV showed she had arrived back at about 09:12.

 

“Only the defendant now knows what happened,” Mr Spence added.

 

The court was told two officers had attended the property at about 09:20 to speak with Mrs Abodunde about the previous day’s domestic incident.

 

“The officers repeatedly knocked on the door and notified them of their presence but got no response or heard any calls for help,” Mr Spence told the court.

However between 40 and 50 “thuds” had been heard, believed to be Abodunde attacking his wife.

 

Officers were given clearance by senior police officials to enter the property at 09:45, the court was told.

 

“When they entered the front door, they immediately found the lifeless body of Mrs Abodunde with her skull smashed in,” Mr Spence said.

 

A postmortem examination found Mrs Abodunde had suffered “catastrophic brain injuries”.

 

She also had injuries that were consistent with her body being “stamped on” as well as being hit with a skateboard.

 

This had been found at the property covered in blood and fragments of skull. The court was told the victim had also been strangled.

 

As Mr Spence addressed the court, the defendant could be heard sobbing from the dock.

 

Nneka Akudolu KC, defending Abodunde, said there was “no other explanation as to why that level of violence was exhibited” other than medication her client was taking at the time of the murder.

 

She said this medication led him to “completely lose control with tragic and lifelong consequences for those who loved” Ms Akudolu.

 

Ibuprofen, vitamins and steroids were found in Abodunde’s blood following the incident, the court was told.

 

“Whilst it does appear that medication was taken, there would be no medical evidence to support that he was medicated with anything that would excuse or cause him to act in the way that he did,” Mr Spence said.

 

During mitigation, Judge Martyn Levett said it was also “surprising” why Abodunde had taken 30 minutes to find the mobile phone once in the house.

 

“It seems to me that he was waiting for confrontation,” he told the court. “There is no debate that there was not going to be confrontation in my view.”

 

Ms Akudolu said Abodunde “was a very well-respected man” both here in the UK and in Nigeria where the couple had previously moved from.

 

He had been a local councillor in Nigeria and had a local street in the country named after him.

The court heard the couple had a “history of frequent disputes over bills and money” with some “low-level violence” involved.

 

Ms Akudolu told the court that “not a day will go by that [Abodunde] does not regret the misery” that he has caused.

 

In his sentencing remarks Judge Levett described Mrs Abodunde’s killing as “ruthless, violent, savage and heartless”.

 

He told the court Abodunde had lied to officers telling them his wife had attempted to attack him with a knife the day before he murdered her.

 

Abodunde also claimed she had tried to beat him, but no evidence was found to substantiate this, the court was told.

As Judge Levett spoke, Abodunde could be seen from the dock with his head in his hands while sobbing.

 

Judge Levett said there had been “no self-defence at all” on Abodunde’s part and he had heard “no remorse other than sobs from the dock”.

 

Following the murder, Suffolk Police referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) due to previous contact with the couple.

 

It said earlier this month, two officers were advised they were being investigated for gross misconduct over potential breaches of the standards of professional behaviour.

 

Another officer is under investigation for breaches amounting to misconduct.

 

An IOPC spokesman said: “This does not mean disciplinary proceedings will necessarily follow. Our investigation remains ongoing.”

Lawal AbdulSalam Olawale

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