“I Want to Beg the Ireland Family”

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Sylvanus Turay: “I am a parent, I know how it feels for your child to be killed or die especially in such a manner."

— Sylvanus Turay, father of Cyber-Ed School shooter, expresses contrition

The father of Jovanus Turay, the student who shot his colleague to death on April 13, has openly apologized to the bereaved family for the tragic situation.

Late Precious Ireland met her untimely demise on Tuesday, April 13 from a gunshot fired by student Jovanus Turay, both students of the Cyber-ED Christian School of Excellence located on Sophie Road, Congo-town, Monrovia.

Jovanus’s father, Sylvanus Turay, in a Facebook video condemned his son’s action and pleaded with the victim’s family for forgiveness.

Turay furthered that his family is horrified; heartbroken, and disappointed just like the Ireland’s families who lost their daughter. The suspect’s father who is a career actor, said his family and the Ireland family are very close and his son did not mean to kill Precious.

“Well, I had the privilege to talk to my son. There are two things he said to me: Daddy, please talk to the Irelands for me, and I want you to know that my son regrets the incident and everything that happened,” Turay noted.

“I regret it,” he added, “I want to beg the Ireland family and every parent, child, the school administration, the staff, and students, and I want to apologize for the embarrassment that was caused by us, by my son.”

Turay further expressed that he does not have any problem with people and or the public sentiments surrounding the death of little Precious, especially with his son’s direct involvement, but “My family regrets the situation and extends sympathy to the Ireland family.”

“I am a parent. I know how it is for your child to be killed or die, especially in such a manner. The situation is horrifying and heartbreaking. My family regrets everything that happened,” Mr. Turay said.

In a tearful tone, Turay narrated that the victim was like a daughter to him and as such, he deeply regrets the incident that led to her death.

“I want people to understand that I did not get to know the late Precious from my son’s school.  I got to know her from her family, and I want to express my regret over the incident and to make people understand that I’m a father and the late Precious was like a daughter to me. Every child of the Irelands, including Daniel, Aaron, Nathaniel, Hannah they are like my own.”

Victim’s family: charge suspect as adult

Earlier, the family of late Precious demanded that the Liberia National Police charge Jovanus as an adult instead of a juvenile.

“We are not making a conclusion at the moment because we obviously know that the act was untimely,” said Atty. Maxwell Grisby, an uncle of the deceased. “Such gruesome killing will not go unpunished, but I don’t how that will happen. So we will give all of our full support to this case.”

“All we want to inform the public is that we cannot make hasty conclusions. The person at age 16 to a greater extent can be determined to have the capacity by a competent court of jurisdiction and where that happens, the law will provide such and can be prosecuted just as an adult,” Grisby added. 

However, for the victim’s family’s wish to become reality, the prosecution team has to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the suspect premeditated the shooting and that he has been in the constant habit of using a gun as a ground to try him as an adult.

Jovanus, an avid freestyle rapper, is seen in several photos making hand gestures as if he were operating a gun—a position, which the prosecution team could argue as a basis to have his trial as an adult. In other photos, he is seen holding a riffle, suggesting his hands-on experience in handling firearms.

Even though the suspect is 16 and a juvenile, and eligible for a court trial, the suspect can only be charged as an adult if a judicial waiver occurs for criminal proceedings. This happens when a juvenile court judge thinks that the act committed could be considered a crime committed by an adult.

Before the court makes such a decision, it has to take into consideration “The best interest of the child” under its jurisdiction, which means that a balance has to be found between juvenile well-being and the actual application of the law.

Section 11.21 Judiciary Law of Liberia stated that “That if a juvenile sixteen years of age or older is charged with a lesser offence, which would be a felony if committed by a person over the age of eighteen years, the juvenile court, if it concludes after a full investigation that it is in the best interest of such juvenile or of the public, may in its discretion waive its jurisdiction and certify such juvenile for proper criminal proceedings to any court which would have trial jurisdiction of such offence if it were committed by a person over the age of eighteen years.”

‘Victim’s father like a brother to me’

Meanwhile, Turay has disclosed that Dr. Philip Z. Ireland, father of the victim, is like a brother to him, and Rita the mother, also like a sister to him.

Turay, therefore, is urging the public to stop saying things that they do not know, even though their interest in the case is appreciated. “I don’t blame people for what they are saying. You know they are so angry because some of them do not know and are carried away because of the death of a child.”

“Now it has become a public sentiment that they are saying all kinds of things, but I understand the people’s concern because of what happened,” Turay said.  “I understand that Precious means a lot to all of us and I regret everything that happened. I want to say a big sorry to the Ireland family and everybody connected to them. All of us regret the situation.”

Cyber-Ed School provides conselors

Meanwhile, Cyber-Ed Christian School of Excellence has announced that it has arranged for professional counselors to guide the students through their experience with this terrible event and the grieving process.

“Good Evening CCS Parents. Words cannot express our appreciation for the kindness and support that you all have shown to the Irelands and CCS. We thank God for you.

“Counselors will be available to speak with students in the fifth grade and above from 2pm to 4pm tomorrow (Friday, April 16) at the school. Counseling will be available for all students interested beginning next week. More details to follow,” the school said in a statement.

9 COMMENTS

  1. MY ❤️ HEART-FELT CONDOLENCES. It’s only now, that student, Jovanus Turay is claiming: “I did not intend to shoot Precious Ireland”; another student. It leaves one to wonder. What was the purpose of student, Jovanus Turay taking a [LOADED WEAPON] to school? For a show-off, that [GUN] should have been empty; for safety reasons…

    • NB. FPA REPORT: As per Corona and Police Forensic accounts, the deceased-student was shot at both; “LEFT AND RIGHT SIDES”] of the body, “SHOT TWICE”. Indeed! I find it hard to believe that as an “accidental discharge” of a [GUN]. *I’m not a weapon or shooting expert. My observation is based solely on [COMMON SENSE]… Please read story in front page Africa, FPA.

  2. Sylvanus, you father of a killer, we have heard all of the obvious crocodile craps from you, and even your insult that we “are carried away by the death of a child“. Go on insulting the public after your loose son has killed a 14 year old innocent little girl.

    But the question to you is that do you want to tell the public or the Irelands that you believed as you have implied you do now that YOU SEEING YOUR SON FANCYING WITH GUNS ON VIDEOS AND GESTURING WITH GUNS ALL ABOUT WEREN’T A BIG DEAL?

    Most of you people who migrated here in the West believe there is nothing wrong with whatever vain, immoral, or even dangerous, acts your kids are involved with once it is western originated.

    There the kids mother was unlawfully keeping a gun in the reach of her 16 years old son in the house with her while watching her son fancying with guns on videos and neither she nor you her father seeing those videos saw anything wrong with such danger.

    Yes, you can insult us by saying we “are carried away by the death of a child“, but that is up to you.

    As for us, we personally believe investigations and and adjudication should be taken in the BEST INTEREST OF THE PUBLIC so as to protect the public and the society from such danger you and that murderer’s mother saw was a happy pass time for your vain and indiscipline son a cold blooded murderer.

  3. You Ass, you want to beg the Ireland get your self on a plane back to Liberia and beg them. You took time to do a video and post it on social media. Precious is not in the hospital. She is dead. She’s not coming back. Your worthless son will probably be out of jail soon. And you making video. U na call da people?

    What kinda heartless man this so.

  4. Oh, let me not forget to respond to my brother, Brother Hney. Thanks Brother Hney. Yes, truly I have been unintentionally not around for some time now. But this cold blooded murder by this so called rapper whose parents expect even an insane person to believe their son carried A LOADED GUN to school just to show off, has seriously drawn my attention. This murder was pre meditated. And that killer must be given a life sentence, or face the gallows. Thanks once again, Brother Hney.

  5. Crocodile tears, hypocrite!

    Tell the Liberian people how you obtained firearms.
    From the recital I read yesterday, Turay’s father was a former immigration man who is deceased.
    Today, the deceased is resurrected, and we are reading that he’s a movie star.
    Well, whatsoever the truth of the matter is, how did he get firearms?
    Why permit your son to play with them, by even bring them to school?
    All those images of your murderer son displaying his acumen for shooting, haven’t you seen any of them on Facebook?
    What has been your reaction to your son’s posts?

    Mr. Turay himself deserves jail sentence in this case if he’s possessing firearms illegally. I don’t know how many human beings he’s killed with them, but he needs to tell the Liberian people.

    How could you make such a happy family sad overnight with your satanic perception of life; always wanting to shed human blood!

  6. I totally agree, brother Freedom To Be Blunt. Turay is responsible. He must do the time. Irrespective of whether the pulling of the trigger was unintentional or whether his age played a role, Turay must be tried and charged.

    • That naughty boy ought to spend the rest of his life in jail. The bullshit that goes on in America everyday with gun violence should not see the face of day in Liberia. Lots of black kids were lied upon in America and were executed some as young as 14 years old. This killer should be tried as an adult and hanged or executed by firing squad to send a clear signal to all other would be killers young or old that those who live by the guns will indeed die by the gun. He should never go free.

  7. That naughty boy ought to spend the rest of his life in jail. The bullshit that goes on in America everyday with gun violence should not see the face of day in Liberia. Lots of black kids were lied upon in America and were executed some as young as 14 years old. This killer should be tried as an adult and hanged or executed by firing squad to send a clear signal to all other would be killers young or old that those who live by the guns will indeed die by the gun. He should never go free.

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