Murder of Major Adams Mahama: Pathologist testifies in court

Dr Lawrence Adusei, the pathologist, who conducted autopsy on the body of late Major Maxwell Adams Mahama on Tuesday, affirmed that he did an independent job in establishing the cause of death of the ex-military officer.

He told the court presided by Justice Mariama Owusu, a Supreme Court judge designate, sitting with additional responsibility as a high court judge that he carries out his job as professional medical practitioner.

Dr Edusei was testifying as the 13th prosecution witness in the case in which 14 persons are standing trial for the alleged murder of Major Mahama.

His statement emanated from questions during cross-examination by Mr Augustine Gyamfi, counsel for accused, who sought to suggest that Dr Adusei’s work was not independent.

The witness averred that he watched a video with police investigators after he had finished the postmortem, wrote the findings and drawn preliminary report.

This was what transpired in court at proceedings yesterday.

Counsel: From the answers given, it’s clear you may not do this work independently from other influences.

They brought whatever they had to me for us to discuss the case.

Witness: As a professional, I always work independently to arrive at my conclusions. That is why I am here alone.

Counsel: So Doctor, what was the essence of your discussion with the investigators?

Witness: My lord, I need to explain few things again. When I perform a post mortem, I need information about the deceased. It’s either from the hospital or an investigator. For this reason, when it is a coroner’s case, I work closely with the investigators.

Counsel: When you first saw the body , had it been tampered with in any form?

Witness: The body was embalmed.

Counsel: What does it mean?

Witness: That is in truth, you introduce chemicals into the body to prevent it from decomposition.

Counsel: Did Major Mahama’s body, have all the body parts intact?

Witness: Yes and no. I did mention that there were lacerations on the scalp and of the compound fracture of the skull. Now, that means that part of the tissues of these areas might have fallen off.

Counsel: You mentioned that you removed two pellets. Which part of the body were they removed from?.

Witness: One was retrieved from the left side of the forehead. The other one was retrieved in the left thoracic cavity that is the left chest.

Counsel: I need clarification here.

Is this the reason why you said the death might have been caused by the gunshot?

Witness: I explained it the last time and I am repeating it again. I said the cause of death is multiple head injuries which includes the gun shot injuries.

Counsel: You stated that apart from the gunshots injuries , the others did not contribute significantly to the cause of death. Could we say the other objects did not contribute anything?

I am putting it to you that the other injuries did not contribute significantly to the death.

Witness: Yes.

Counsel: Were you able to establish the Time of death?

Witness: I didn’t know the time he passed on.

Counsel: Can you explain to the court the reason why you watched the video. Witness: My lord, my work means interaction with investigators.

Counsel: They asked you to watch it.

Witness: My lord I had finished the post mortem, I had written my findings, I had drawn a preliminary report. The video was to point to them that gun was used.

On November 20, 2019, Dr Lawrence Adusei testified that the late Major Maxwell Adams Mahama died of ‘multiple head injuries’.

The pathologist said that two pellets were also retrieved in the brain of the late military officer.

The late Major Mahama was on duty at Denkyira-Obuasi in the Central Region, when on May 29, 2017, some residents allegedly mistook him for an armed robber and lynched him.

The mob had ignored his persistent plea that he was an officer of the Ghana Armed Forces.

The accused are William Baah, an Assembly member of Denkyira Obuasi, Bernard Asamoah alias Daddy, Kofi Nyame a.k.a Abortion, Akwasi Boah, Kwame Tuffour, Joseph Appiah Kubi, Michael Anim and Bismarck Donkor.

Others are John Bosie, Akwasi Baah, Charles Kwaning, Emmanuel Badu, Bismarck Abanga and Kwadwo Anima.

The case has been adjourned to December 16.


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