A death attributed to epilepsy turned out to be a crime of passion.
Raghavendra N, a resident of Karenahalli, Doddaballapur, was originally thought to have died in an epileptic seizure at around 2.15 a.m. on December 27, 2021.
No one doubted his wife, Shylaja, 30, when she said he suffered a head injury after suddenly collapsing in a seizure. The family moved on and performed their last rites.
But the truth began to come out two days later when Raghavendra’s father, Nanjundappa, asked his 10-year-old grandson to tell him what exactly happened that night. The boy said he saw a male friend of his mother in their house at the time.
Raghavendra’s brother Chandrashekar suspected something was wrong and went to the loom factory where the deceased worked. The factory is located very close to Raghavendra’s house.
CCTV footage from the factory showed a man entering the house around 10.45pm on December 26. Convinced of the presence of a man in the house at the time of his brother’s death, Chandrashekar surrendered to the police on December 31 and filed a murder complaint against Shylaja.
Police detained Shylaja for questioning and she confessed. But what really surprised the police was the revelation that Shylaja’s mother, Lakshmidevamma, 50, was also involved in the murder. The main culprits were Shylaja and her lover, Hanumantha. It was him the boy had seen that night.
Raghavendra and Shylaja got married 12 years ago. Besides the son, they also have a daughter.
Shylaja from Andhra Pradesh worked in a garment factory where she met Hanumantha and grew close to him. Raghavendra got wind of the affair and often argued with his wife about it.
Shylaja and Hanumantha decided to get rid of Raghavendra and asked for help from Lakshmidevamma, who didn’t exactly like his son-in-law.
What the boy saw
According to the boy, he was awakened by a noise in the middle of the night.
He saw his grandmother (Lakshmidevamma) pinning his father’s (Raghavendra) legs while his mother (Shylaja) sat on his back. Hanumantha did the main job of hitting Raghavendra with a rolling pin until he died.
When the frightened boy asked his father what they were doing, Hanumantha beat him and threatened to kill him if he told anyone.
The boy’s testimony, along with the location of Hanumantha’s cellphone and CCTV footage, helped uncover the truth.
The police arrested all three for murder and destruction of evidence.
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