On December 23, 2014, days before the festive Christmas holiday 24 year-old Tombah James lost her life to alleged abuse from her boyfriend whose name has not been released.
Neighbors and her oldest brother Old Pah, who knew the late Tombah and her boyfriend well, all say that the young woman, who had a substance abuse problem, was beaten regularly by her boyfriend.
“The man is an abuser and beat her up with a rock days before she died,” Old Pah said. “Everyone living in her yard told me that he beat on her badly before I could rush her to the hospital the two days before she died. Whenever Tombah would go to [her boyfriend] for food for their five month-old child, he always disgraced her until they would end up fighting. His last girlfriend that he had died as well, before my sister started dating him,” he added.
The boyfriend is being investigated by the Liberia National Police after the metro base police depot on Center Street saw the condition of the late Tombah’s corpse.
“I saw her body and there were bruises, scrape marks on her chest near her breast and a lot of beating marks and wounds on her back,” stated an officer who asked not to be identified.
While investigating the matter, our reporter asked about the child who was left behind by the late Tombah during her death, Old Pah stated that the child’s grandmother, her father’s mother, took custody of the child.
“Since her mother is no more, the grandma has taken her. I even want to notify the international media about what happened to my sister because it’s not right. Now the child has no mother,” he cried.
Meanwhile, Facebook comments by those familiar with the case have revealed the late Tombah’s five month-old daughter has also passed away and, according to witnesses, she died as a result of malaria.
“I saw the report at the clinic and her malaria tested positive. The family seems concerned but they didn’t pay their complete bill at the clinic, nor did they go back. Did they give her the medicine is my question,” international photojournalist Holden Warren posted.
According to the professional and international photojournalist, Old Pah says he wants justice for the death of his sister Tombah.
“My friend longs for justice, his world is completely shattered… and has brought him back to the day he witnessed rebels slit his father’s throat,’ Holden explained.