Liberia: Man Hacks Girlfriend to Death, Then Poisons Himself

Nyanquoi’s murder weapon

The quiet township of Crozierville, rural Montserrado County, had a startling awakening on Sunday, September 3, when it was reported a man had hacked to death his live-in girlfriend and severely injured two others. 

The suspect, Nyanquoi Porte, is in police custody at the Central Prison. It is not clear what pushed the suspect to commit the act, but sources told the Daily Observer that Nyanquoi has a history of alcoholism and domestic abuse.

Sources said Porte, who makes a living as a farmer and handyman, was seen drinking excessive amounts of alcohol after he completed a contractural job somewhere in the township.

Upon finishing a contractual job on September 2, Porte was paid and later seen drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. 

Later that evening, he arrived home and found his girlfriend Sarah Cox, 40, cooking cassava leaf. He flew into a rage and asked her why she was cooking cassava leaf “when she knew he did not like it.” 

Cox told him that she and other members of the household had an appetite for cassava leaf. She tried to reason with him that she usually prepares a separate dish for him whenever she cooks cassava leaf.

Porte responded by throwing things around the kitchen including the food that was being prepared.  When his rage subsided, Porte left the house, telling Cox that she should lock the door because he would return the next morning.

A few hours later, Cox’s daughter asked her mother to accompany her to the outside toilet. While there, the girl heard a sound and alerted her mother, sources said. Before Cox could identify the person, Porte came from behind her with a cutlass and started chopping at her body, our source said.  

Cox fell to the ground and tried to get up, but Porte pinned her down, continued to attack her with the cutlass, and then slit her throat. Sources said she died instantly.

When Cox’s daughter tried to defend her, Porte chopped her and did the same with Cox’s mother, who came out when she heard her screams. 

Cox’s older daughter, who also lives with them, did not get along with Porte, sources said. She might have been Porte’s next target, but she escaped through a window to get help.

Soon, neighbors and family members began gathering at the scene. Porte had fled the scene by then but was arrested after police tracked him down at his remote half-acre pepper garden and surrounded him. 

“I’m finished,” Porte was heard saying, realizing he had nowhere else to run.

Sources said he reached for a small bottle in his pocket that he had been sipping when police knocked it from his hand. 

The bottle, sources was a poisoned drink that left him unconscious. Police tied him to a round pole, brought him back to town, and laid him in a vehicle that conveyed him to the John F. Kennedy Hospital in Monrovia. 

According to sources, Porte responded well to the medical treatment and was later taken to the Monrovia Central Prison on Monday. 

As news of the killing spread across the town, people huddled in their homes, afraid to come out for Sunday service because Porte was still on the run. 

Town residents are speculating that the killing was premeditated. One source said people saw Porte sharpening his cutlass on a grinding stone. 

“But why are you sharpening cutlass time like this?”  The person asked Porte. 

“You will hear the news,” Porte responded. 

The town was in uproar over the weekend. Initially, Cox’s relatives threatened to carry out revenge against Porte’s family. 

Most people in the town knew that Porte had a drinking problem. But investigators are still trying to figure out what drove Porte to kill his girlfriend and injure her mother and daughter. 

Cox, the only child of her mother, had three daughters before she got into a relationship with Porte. The couple, who had lived together for five years up to the time of Cox’s murder, do not have any children together. 

Porte himself has an adult daughter by another lady who, the Daily Observer learned, left him due to domestic abuse. The daughter does not live in Crozierville. 

According to sources, he once cornered the woman with a knife to find out why she left him. She explained that, because of the way he was ill-treating her, she felt that he no longer loved her, so she left. 

She also managed to convince him to not hurt her for the sake of their child. He “begged” her to return, albeit at knifepoint. She eventually left Porte.