Later that night, I asked my wife if Claudia had told her about any troubles she was having at home, she denied knowledge of any problems Claudia might be having, and since I had agitated two people already, I decided not to push this anymore. Maybe I was just being paranoid.
Later that night I woke up troubled, I just couldn’t sleep, I felt something was terribly wrong, and when I tapped my wife to see if she was asleep, I noticed her eyes were red, not from sleep, but from crying, my heart missed a beat. I asked her in a very stern tone, to tell me what was going on. She went on to tell me that Ikenna had been beating Claudia, my baby, the same child I had never laid my hands on, and when I asked why she had not told me all this before now, she said she was afraid as to how I might react.
I was furious, I got out of bed, got dressed and headed for Claudia’s home, and I was going to put a stop to this once and for all. My heart was racing and I felt sick in my stomach, I pulled up at their home, and immediately went in, it was very quiet, the lights were on. I tried to open the door, but it was locked, so I banged on it. A neighbor emerged from the back and motioned for me to come over, she told me there had been louds screams coming from their flat, and that Ikenna had left a few minutes before I arrived. We went to the back door and forced it open, I ran into the house calling out for my Claudia, I was panicking, and then suddenly saw her laying on the couch in the living room. I rushed to her, my heart sank when I saw her, her eyes had been beaten shut, she had a swollen lip, and bruises all over her arms. She could barely move, she could barely speak, and when I tried to carry her up, she winced in pain, and that was when I noticed the blood, the couch was soaked with it. She had a large gash in her side, and it looked like a stab wound and she was bleeding, I quickly picked her up, grabbed a towel from the kitchen in an attempt to stop the bleeding, I put her in the car and drove to the hospital with the nice neighbor lady, I called my wife on the way.
We arrived at the hospital, she was immediately rushed into surgery, while I waited for my wife to arrive, I called Ikenna’s number several times. It rang for a bit, and after a while it was switched off, I called the police, and explained everything, they sent two officers to the hospital to see things for themselves, my wife arrived and she was beside herself, she wept without control. I didn’t attempt to console her, all I wanted was to find Ikenna and ask the question, why did he do this to my child?
The police arrived and took statements from myself and the nice neighbor lady, they had to wait for my wife to calm down, before they could ask her any questions, Claudia was still in surgery when I left with the police to make a former complaint, I got to the station, wrote my statement again, and left.
Claudia died a few hours after surgery, she had lost too much blood, she had broken ribs and a punctured lung, my baby had been beaten to death, and I was not there to protect her.
Ikenna was arrested and charged with murder, he was not charged with abuse, just murder, the police simply stated they didn’t have substantial evidence to bring abuse charges against him, no one had ever reported abuse, and her wounds could be as a result of anything.
I was there when Claudia was born, I helped pick out her first bed, I picked out her first bike, I walked her to school on her first day, I helped pick out her first car, and now I was picking out her casket.
I don’t understand it; I never raised my hand to hit my wife or child, why did he take my baby away from me?
I made a promise to Claudia, never to let any harm come to her, I didn’t keep that promise, and I let that bastard take her away from me.
He was charged with just murder, not abuse.
DO NOT KEEP SILENT. REPORT DOMESTIC ABUSE TO TRUSTED FAMILY AND TO THE AUTHORITIES BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.
Arome Ameh (AKA The Priest)
Arome Ameh is a former Banker turned Screen Writer/Producer/Blogger. He has written/produced both True Life/Fictional Stories/documentaries Via his blog www.ameharome.WordPress.com and on TV/Youtube.