- ’How I murdered seven women’
- Says I enjoy killing when the urge comes on me
- ’I killed my first victim in a Lagos hotel’
It was confession time on Friday for the man believed to have been responsible for the serial killing of young women in Port Harcourt over the last few months.
Thirty-nine year old Gracious David West told reporters in the Rivers State capital that he had also killed in Lagos and Imo States.
He put the number of his victims at seven.
He was arrested on Thursday by the police while en route Uyo from c.
His arrest came hours after protests by women groups in Port Harcourt calling for the security agencies to fish out the brains behind the mysterious killings of women in hotels.
West, who hails from Buguma in Asari-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State, claimed that he killed five women in Port Harcourt and one each in Ikeja and Owerri.
His modus operandi was to take his victims to a hotel, confiscate their ATM cards and thereafter kill them.
He would then proceed to the nearest ATM and clear the accounts of his victims.
His first killing was in Lagos.
“I started the killing in Lagos, that was where I got money because the first girl had N85,000 in her account,” West said.
“After that, I went to Port Harcourt, then Owerri. I returned to Port Harcourt. The last girl I killed I met her at the club.”
West said he was on his way to Akwa-Ibom when he was arrested by operatives of the special anti-robbery squad, Bori in Rivers.
”When the urge comes, I move into a hotel, invite a girl after and after eating and making love, I will bring out a kitchen knife and threaten her not to shout,” West said.
He added: “I don’t know what comes over me to kill. After I have killed, I feel remorse and cry for killing, but after that, the irresistible urge to kill comes over me again. I kill alone.
”I was a member of the Degbam Cult group, I have since repented. I am not killing for any cult group. I just kill. I don’t know what comes over me to kill.
In his confession he said ”The first woman I killed in one of the hotels in Ikeja had about N85,000 in her account. Before I strangled them after love making, I used the knife to cut the hotel bedding into a semblance of a twine which I used to bind their hands and feet, and also used the knife to threaten them.
“The kitchen knife was sold to me by an aboki. I would threaten that if they raised the alarm, I would kill them with the knife.
“Out fear, they kept quiet while I raised the volume of the television set in the hotel room to prevent any noise from my room. I never killed with the knife.”
West also revealed that before he killed his female victims, he insisted on knowing their account balance and ATM pin number.
“After strangulating them, I would steal their ATM cards, empty their accounts from any nearby ATM machine and move on.
“It was not all the girls I slept with that I killed. I only killed whenever the irresistible urge to kill overwhelmed me.
“l don’t have a house. My mother died through poisoning from her mate and I am homeless. I sleep in hotels.”
In his confession he said that the phones he stole from his victims were sold to a customer in Waterlines Junction, off Port Harcourt/Aba Expressway and another buyer around MTN office by Oil Mill Market in Port Harcourt.
West claimed to be an ex-militant rehabilitated by the Omega Power Ministry (OPM) which also got a job for him at the Federal University of Science and Technology, FUTO, Owerri, through the Church.
He ditched the job after stealing students’ property.
Police Commissioner, Mustapha Dandaura who paraded the suspect does not believe that West was acting alone.
“The suspect is definitely not alone in these killings, though he had made useful confessions, but the command will go beyond his confessions to ensure that a conclusive end is achieved that serves the interest of justice ,” he said.
Dandaura said his insistence that hotels in the state should install Closed Circuit Television Cameras, CCTVs, was beginning to yield positive results.
He vowed that the Police, under his Command would fight crimes headlong in the state, adding that with joint operations with the army and other security agencies, the killings in Ogoniland was dropping, while “I have stabilized East-West road, the Elele-Owerri road.”