Decomposing body of former High Court judge retrieved from residence

Decomposing body of former High Court judge retrieved from residence
Source: Ghana | | GN
Date: 21-04-2019 Time: 06:04:47:pm
File photo

The decomposing body of a former High Court judge has been retrieved from Sakumono Estates residence in Tema on Friday.

Neighbours believe Ringo Cass Akurugu Azumah, who had been living alone, died about a week ago.

Police had to force his door open after the neighbours reported that a foul odour was coming from the direction of his apartment, according to a report by state-run Ghana News Agency.

The former Justice of the High Court was removed from office in 2016 on grounds of absenteeism.

At the time, a statement by the Judicial Secretary, Justice Alex B Poku Acheampong, explained that users of the court and a leading legal firm petitioned the Chief Justice on his continuous absenteeism.

As a result, he was asked to hand over his bungalow and other court materials in his possession to the Judicial Secretary.

Ghana News Agency reports that a resident, who sells bags few meters away from his flat, said on Friday at about 0100 hours, he saw liquid seeping from the last floor of the flat where the deceased lived alone.

He said the pungent odour from the seepage, with an accompanying putrid smell, was unmistakable of that of decaying flesh.

A Sanitation Officer, who had earlier on knocked on the door of the deceased to collect his monthly fee but heard no response after several attempts, unusual of the occupant, explained that “the overpowering smell emanating from that particular entrance got me alarmed especially because the man lived alone in the house and his car was parked outside.”

He said, “I swiftly rode to the police station, few meters away from the flat, to make an official complaint of my suspicion”.

Another resident who pleaded anonymity expressed shock at the passing of the judge, who he said seemed somewhat isolated and was seldom seen around the neighbourhood.

“The only time you will spot him is when he had to wash his car in the early hours in the day and would hardly even take a walk around,” he added.

On those instances, he said, the former judge came across as rather quiet and reserved and was always hesitant to respond to greetings from neighbours or anyone.

This, he said, made him feel there was something wrong with him because of the rare gesture he sometimes showed towards residents, most of whom knew little or nothing at all about him.

Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Afia Tenge, the Public Relations Officer,  Accra Regional Police Command, confirming the incident said her outfit on April 19 received information of the death of Justice Ringo Cass Akurugu Azumah in his apartment in Sakumono from a complainant.

She said immediately, a team of Crime Scene Experts from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) headquarters in Accra were dispatched to the scene where “a male adult about 60 years was lying dead”.

ASP Afia Tenge further stated that, after careful inspection of the body, with no marks of violence detected, the body was deposited at the Police Hospital morgue in Accra for preservation pending an autopsy to ascertain the cause of death.