Over fifty family members (administrators) of two Intestate Estates, one being the late Kargobyah and the other, the late Gbeyee Summon, on Tuesday, November 3 staged a ‘peaceful protest’ in front of Civil Law Court ‘B’ at the Temple of Justice, minutes after Judge Roland Dahn dropped the jury’s bribery accusation against one of his bailiffs, Brenda Geekor.
The late Kargobyah and the late Gbeyee Summon’s administrators accused bailiff Geekor of receiving L$50,000 to influence the October 29, 2019 unanimous verdict of the jury in favor of Evan Urey, the administrator of the Intestate Estate of the late Daniel W. Urey, who they had accused of fraudulently occupying 1000 acres of their respective lands, situated in Careysburg, outside Monrovia.
They claimed that Geekor collected the L$50,000 from Evan Urey.
However, Judge Dahn, in his ruling, said that most of the evidence the administrators of the late Kargobyah and the late Summon produced were based on hearsay, presumption, speculation and a figment of their own imagination.
Judge Dahn further ruled that from the angle of criminal and civil evidence, “This court believes, and so concludes that they miserably failed to prove their case beyond reasonable doubt under the criminal procedural law and by preponderance of evidence under the civil procedure law.”
Dahn added, “At no time did any of those witnesses, who testified during the entire hearing, mentioned that Evan Urey gave them money either directly or indirectly.
“Brenda Geekor, who was at the center of the entire episode, took the witness stand in her own defense, but denied ever receiving money from anyone in connection with the late Kargobyah and the late Gbeyee Summon jury’s bribery accusation.”
“Therefore, the accusation against the Urey and Geekor is denied and dismissed, and Geekor is hereby ordered discharged from ever answering to the charge of jury tempering and or bribery,” the Judge declared.
Shortly afterward, the administrators, through their spokesman, Emmanuel J. Bentoe, described Judge Dahn’s judgment as “total disappointment.”
Bentoe, angrily said that they are going to resist any attempt by anyone to evict them from their family inheritance.
“Look, our grandparents acquired these properties for us, and we are not going to allow anyone to take it from us. We are going to resist anyone even if it causes our death,” Bentoe vowed.
According to Bentoe, they produced overwhelming evidence to establish that the jurors and Geekor received money from the Urey in favor of the ruling.
“We are not going to allow the Urey to use 1890 deed to take our properties from us through illegitimate means, and with the help of the court,” Bentoe said.
Later, Bentoe produced ‘call logs’ of Lonestar Communication Corporation and the Orange, which established that there were call exchanges between a juror, Naomi Jackson and Eva Urey.
The ‘call logs’ were produced after the late Kargobyah and the late Gbeyee Summon’s Intestate Estates’ lawyers asked Judge Dahn to subpoena the two GSM companies to produce communication exchanges between any of the jurors, and the Urey as of the period of October 29, 2019.
The GSM Companies appeared and produced their respective call logs, and their analysis showed that a juror, Naomi Jackson, did call Eva Urey on October 30, 2019 at about 18:31 and 18:47.
Despite the evidence, Judge Dahn’s ruling said: “The evidence were hearsay, presumption, speculation and a figment of their own imagination.”
Before Judge Dahn’s ruling, three of the witnesses, including Cllr. Sam Y. Cooper, one of the lawyers for the late Kargobyah, and the late Gbeyee Summon’s Intestate Estates, claimed that Bailiff Geekor collected money from the Urey to influence the jury’s verdict.
Earlier, Cllr. Cooper, his complaint against Brenda and the jury panel, claimed that immediately after, the trial jury was disbanded, he booked some of the jurors dividing large sum of money at the Becky Nest Entertainment Center on Carey Street, Monrovia, which activities he brought to the attention of Judge Dahn that prompted the investigation.
Cllr. Cooper also displayed photograph of the jurors’ jubilation, and the distribution of the money, and claimed that another Bailiff, Miss Patricia Kortu, was present while they divided the money in question.
In his testimony, Zebedes Freeman, who is also a bailiff, said while on his way to buy water in the filing room, he heard Bailiff Brenda Geekor and Urey arguing or discussing about L$30,000 and L$50,000.
Bailiff Freeman further explained that at that time Evan Urey told Brenda that he gave her L$50,000, but Geekor denied and said that Urey only gave her L$30,000.
“Upon hearing that conversation, I returned to the Court, and while there, one of the jurors told me that Brenda Geekor is not treating them right,” Freeman quoted the female juror in court.
Freeman claimed that the juror, whose name he did not mention, quoted her by saying, “Brenda
told us how Urey gave her L$30,000 for us, but we are hearing L$50,000, and they should meet at Becky Nest Entertainment Center on Carey Street in Monrovia to distribute the money.
Another witness, Martheline Smith, alleged that she was present when the argument between Brenda Geekor and two female court staffs, namely: Rose and Siatta took place, at which time Geekor denied having money for anyone.
She said Rose got annoyed, and accused Geekor of always cheating them whenever they divided money.
In her defense, Bailiff Geekor claimed that prior to the October 29, 2019 verdict, she had lost her father, “and so I came to the office to inform my workmates about the incident.”
Later, she came back to work [after] she had buried her father.
Bailiff Geekor also claimed that on October 29, while in her office, she remembered a female juror came to her, and asked for her share of the money in question.
“I asked her for what?” the female juror, Geekor claimed: “You have money for us.”
Brenda said that she informed the female juror that she has no money for them. She quoted the female juror as wondering as to “why this lady caused me to come here.”
Brenda said that when she asked the female juror about the identity of the lady that gave her the news, the juror answered, “Siatta, who is a juror.”
Brenda told the court that later, Siatta came to the office on the same money matter, but she denied having money for them, neither did she receive money from anyone from Evan Urey.
Meanwhile, lawyers representing the complainant have taken an appeal to the Supreme Court.