Heritage (Monrovia)

Liberia: Investigation - Rape, Domestic Violence Top Crime List in Cape Mount

A recent investigation conducted in Grand Cape Mount County for the year 2012 reveals that rape and domestic violence top the list of crimes committed in that part of the country.

Grand Cape Mount County, which is one of the 15 counties that comprise the first-level of administrative division of Liberia, is situated in the northwestern portion of the country, with five political districts. Robertsport serves as Grand Cape Mount County's capital, with the area of the county measuring 5,162 square kilometres (1,993 sq mi).

The county is bordered by Gbarpolu County to the northeast and Bomi County to the southeast. The northern part of Grand Cape Mount County borders the nation of Sierra Leone, while to the west lies the Atlantic Ocean. According to the investigation, mostly girls between the ages of 12-15 years are rape survivors in the county.

A social worker at the St. Thomas Government Hospital in Grand Cape County's capital Robertsport, Madam Pauline Nimele, Wednesday, 18 December 2012 told the Heritage that rape and domestic violence cases are prevalent cases that pour into the wards of the hospital.

She narrated that a recent rape case received at the hospital was a 16-year-old rape survivor [name withheld], who was on 26 July of this year, allegedly gang raped in GolaKonneh District by four men, including a 14-year-old lad, whom she said, was set free due to the lack of juvenile facilities in the county's judicial system.

Additionally, she recalled that a 16-year-old girl was allegedly raped by her biological father, who she [Pauline Nimele] stated, blamed his action on "the work of the Devil." Police sources, who confided in the Heritage on the condition of remaining anonymous for this report, hinted that excluding those cases compromised for family reason and other reasons, nine (9) rape cases have so far reached the Liberian National Police (LNP) station in Robertsport this year.

Our police sources divulged that by the middle of this year, a 31- year-old man only identified as Kwesi, arrested and detained for rape, escaped the central prison facility in the county. The police sources revealed that another male identified as Momo Perry fled the County for neighboring Sierra Leone, following his complicity in a gang rape incident.

One of only two LNP officers assigned in Grand Cape Mount County, in charge of the Women and Children Protection Section (WACPS), Detective Comfort S. Johnson declined to speak to this writer on the grounds that her bosses did not authorize her to do so.

However, when quizzed, she corroborated the Heritage's findings, admitting that "yes, rape and domestic violence are the main crimes that are giving us hard time."

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