A trigger-happy police sergeant attached to the Elelenwo Police Division has shot and killed a 38-year-old man, Abiodun Jimoh.
The incident happened in Elelenwo community, in the Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State on Friday night, when a team of policemen arrested the deceased and his younger brother, Ismail Jimoh, while they were returning from a party.
Ismail, who narrated the incident to journalists in Port Harcourt on Sunday said that the killer cop was drunk.
His words: “On Friday night, I was carrying my brother on my motorcycle home when some policemen stopped us with their van. They searched us thoroughly and found our identity cards in our pockets; they didn’t see anything that could implicate us. So, their superior officer told them to let us go.
“But one officer insisted that we were criminals and that we must be taken to the station, which we accepted. My late elder brother entered the police van, but I told them that I was going to ride my motorcycle.
“So, we started moving to the station. I was in front of the van with my motorcycle, but the van later stopped on the way and I rode back to meet them.
“The officers said since they had arrested us, we must bail ourselves to regain our freedom. They asked how much was on me and I told them that I had just N2,000. When we got to the Elelenwo station, the senior officer in the team returned our phones to us and said we should go. He said I should return later with the particulars of my motorcycle and they would release it.”
According to Ismail, one of the policemen, however, refused to release them.
He said things degenerated when he told the sergeant to listen to his colleagues and let them go.
“The officer that shot my brother was drunk because I could smell alcohol on him. He refused to let us go, saying we must enter the cell. Other four officers were telling him to let us go, but he refused to listen.
“When I told him to listen to his senior colleagues, he got angry and used his rifle to hit me in the face. While his colleagues tried to hold him, I heard a gunshot, which hit my brother.
“When I turned to look, I saw my brother lying on the floor and battling for his life. I saw that a bullet also hit another policeman. The senior officers dragged away his gun from him.
“After rushing to three hospitals without attention in bid to safe my brother’s life, I told them to take him to the hospital he’s registered for medical care.
“When we got there, they did not attend to us, I found that very painful. My brother had lost much blood. We then moved for the Braithwaite Memorial Hospital. On our way, I was the only one with my brother on the truck of the patrol van. I tore my shirt to tie the bleeding. I was still telling him to keep hope alive.
“I was calling everyone to tell them what was happening. They heard my calls, stopped and asked me to give them back my phone. At that, point they drove roughly. I fell from the van, got injured and fell unconscious.
“They knew I fell but they didn’t even bother stopping. They sped off with my brother on the van. It was a vigilante in the area that saved my life.
“My wife called my brother’s glo line, and it rang in his bag with me. That was when I realised my brother’s iPhone was left in the bag.
“I told my wife all that happened. The next morning, I told my brother’s wife and we had to go back to the Elelenwo Police Station where they shot my brother.
Ismail demanded justice for his brother, saying he must not die in vain.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, CP Joseph Mukan in a statement issued by the Command’s spokesman, SP Nnamdi Omoni, condemned the shooting which he noted was without justification.
He said: “The sergeant, without justification, shot Abiodun Jimoh who was immediately rushed to the hospital but later died. His remains have been deposited in the mortuary.
“The incident is being investigated and the outcome will be communicated to the public. Meanwhile the Police Sergeant who carried out the dastardly act is in custody for debriefing and psychological evaluation. His Orderly Room Trial will commence in earnest, for possible arraignment.
“The Command is in touch with the family and has commiserated with them over the unfortunate incident and has assured them that the interest of justice will be served in the circumstance, while appealing for calm and allow the law to take its full course.”
He did not disclose the name of the killer cop.