After what seems to be a lull, armed robbers yesterday went on the rampage at Amukoko area of the Lagos metropolis. The six dare-devil armed robbers killed two people and injured two policemen.
The robbers, who were operating on motorcycles, opened fire on a man who just emerged from a bank with huge sums of money. The man died instantly while the robbers carted away his money. They also wounded two policemen, among them a mobile police inspector, during an exchange of gunfire at Odun-Ade market in Amukoko area.
The incident occurred about 9:30am near a second generation bank from where the victim withdrew the money. It was learnt that immediately the robbers saw the man come out of the bank, they opened fire on him, killed him and carted away his money. In an ensuing gun duel with the mobile policeman guiding the bank, one of the robbers sustained gunshot wounds in the leg while the policeman was shot in the hand. In order not to leave their injured colleague, the robbers ferried him on their motorcycle and fled.
But the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in charge of Amukoko Police Division, SP Frank Abba, was alerted and in turn, he sent signals to all the stations in the area to be on the lookout for the robbers.
According to a police source, the DPO in charge of Ajegunle Police Division, CSP Aminu Gusau, led the anti-robbery squad to lay an ambush for the fleeing robbers.
But when they got to Oregie area, the robbers got the wounded robber off the motorcycle and tried to shoot him. A witness, Adetunji Bakare, said the robbers were afraid the injured colleague, later identified as Monday Ohobor, might implicate them if arrested as he was slowing down their escape. He said: “While they wanted to shoot him, the robbers shot and killed an innocent mechanic apprentice, Idris Taiwo, at Kola bus stop, Ajegunle.
Taiwo was rushed to the Ajeromi General Hospital, Oregie, where he was pronounced dead. “The robbers collected a gun from their colleague who identified himself as Monday Ohobor, a Republic of Benin national. They started to shoot sporadically and indiscriminately but some brave policemen led by CSP Gusau engaged the robbers in exchange of gun duel. “While three of the robbers with the money and guns escaped, the police apprehended three others including Ohobor.”
According to Bakare, one of the robbers, who rode the motorcycle, attempted to escape but he ran into the waiting hands of a policeman attached to Ajegunle Police Division. The witness said the policeman arrested and handcuffed the suspected robber, while Gusau and others arrested two others, one of who was Ohobor. A police source said the police found three live bullets on Ohobor. “But initially, Ohobor denied being a robber.
He claimed he was a victim of the robbers who carried him on the motorcycle after shooting him and dispossessing him of his N600,000 and a handset. “He also claimed that the robbers put the three bullets in his pocket, while he thought they were his house keys. “Ohobor also claimed to be a car agent in Cotonou, in the Republic of Benin.
He said he had never robbed in his life. But when the police asked him who owned the gun the other robbers collected from him, he started weeping,” the source added. According to the source, when the suspect who rode the motorcycle and claimed to be a commercial motorcyclist was brought out for Ohobor to identify, he gave the injured accomplice a sign.
The source added that witnesses shouted that “he is giving him sign with his eyes and head”. Meanwhile, angry youths wanted to attack the Ajeromi General Hospital, because of Taiwo’s death.
The mob was, however, dispersed by men of the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) and policemen from Ajegunle Division. The three suspects were later transferred to the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS), Ikeja, for further investigation. When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Dolapo Badmos, confirmed that three of the robbers were arrested.
She said: “The Lagos State Police Command has arrested three armed robbers who operated in the early hours of today (yesterday) around Amukoko area of Lagos.
“The men, after their operations while trying to escape through Ajegunle, were spotted by a policeman attached to a bank and after a hot chase they opened fire and in cross firing one of them was shot on the leg, while a stray bullet from the robbers hit a road side mechanic. The robbers were later arrested. Ammunition were recovered along with a motorcycle.
Case transferred to SARS for further investigation.”