[With Jojo’s willingness to help Ashley in the case, Ashley finally agreed to have him as her defense counsel. Upon lots of interaction but still without any substantive evidence to prove her innocence, Rhoda as it became necessary had to serve as a witness for her sister, since Rhoda was with Ashley throughout the day which was said that the murder of Eva had taken place. Lois who later went to visit Ashley was briefed on the new development, and she was happy that Jojo and Rhoda were going to help her friend.]
After presentations from both defense and prosecuting counsels at the hearing, Rhoda was ready to bear witness for her sister, as Henry, Ashley’s ex-fiancé was also ready to testify against her. Somehow, Ashley just couldn’t understand why Henry was bent on destroying her after cheating on and being disloyal to her.
During the cross- examination process as Rhoda was called to the witness box, she made it clear when she was interrogated by Defense Counsel Jojo Annan that she was with her sister throughout that day on which it was being said that Eva was murdured. She didn’t observe Ashley move out of the house at any point in time or even touch her phone. And so there was no way her sister could have orchestrated such a thing.
With Jojo having no further questions to ask, the prosecuting counsel took over to interrogate Rhoda.
“Miss Rhoda Banks… I’m sure you might know the accused too well more than anyone here in this court, since you claim that she is your sister! Now can you tell this honorable court in one sentence the accused’s reaction when she got to find out that the deceased was having an affair with her fiancé?”
“She was heartbroken and angry.” Rhoda replied the Prosecuting Counsel.
“Good! So can you describe to us what the accused does, or how she behaves when she’s angry?”
“Okay!” Rhoda said with a pause as she looked at Ashley’s face. She prayed that her witness wouldn’t implicate her sister. “Okay… she’d put on a frown… Sometimes she would refuse talking to anyone… Sometimes she would cry… Or say crazy stuff!”
“Oh! She sometimes would cry? Like a baby or what?” The prosecuting counsel asked cynically as some people giggled and led to Jojo raising an objection.
“Objection My Lord! I don’t find the line of the Prosecuting counsel’s interrogation relevant to the matter at stake!” Jojo raised.
“Objection sustained! Counsel, go straight to the point! We aren’t here to joke!” The Judge said to the prosecuting counsel.
“Yes My Lord! I apologise.” He replied as he went back to interrogate Rhoda.
“Now Miss Banks. You made an interesting statement. That when the Accused is angry she would say crazy stuff! Now can you tell this honorable court per what you understand as crazy if your sister ever issued any threatening statement about the deceased to your hearing?”
Rhoda looked terrified. She remembered her sister make statements like “I’ll make Eva pay for this!” “She’ll regret this!” during the time she got to know of their affair. Should she tell the court the truth? Should she lie to protect her sister?
Lois looked agitated as Rhoda for a while couldn’t answer that question.
“Miss Banks the court is waiting! Answer please!” The prosecuting counsel asked again. Did you ever hear the accused make any threatening statement about the deceased Miss Eva Darko?”
©Dorothy Budu-Arthur, 2016