Two suspected criminals involved in the gruesome murder of an Assistant Superintendent of Police, Ukam Efut, have been killed, the Imo State Police Command said.
The PUNCH reported that the suspects chopped off the private parts of the slain cop at a checkpoint in Agwa in the Oguta Local Government Area of the state on Tuesday.
A statement by the command spokesperson, Micheal Abattam, in Owerri, the state capital, stated that the preliminary investigation conducted by the command suggested that the slain suspects and their fleeing accomplices were members of Eastern Security Network, the militant wing of the Indigenous People of Biafra.
Abattam also disclosed that two locally made double barrel guns with seven lives cartridges and ten expended cartridges were recovered at the scene of the crime.
While extending the sympathies of the state Commissioner of Police, Muhammad Barde, to the family of the slain ASP, Abattam advised the public to be on the lookout for people with bullet wound injuries and swiftly report them to the nearest police station.
The statement read, “On May 3, at about 1605hrs, while policemen attached to Agwa Divisional Headquarters were conducting stop and search duty, armed bandits suspected to be members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra and its armed affiliate, Eastern Security Network in their numbers emerged from the surrounding bushes shooting sporadically at the policemen who swiftly took cover and responded, engaging them in a fierce gun duel, while they called for backup from the Divisional Police Headquarters, Agwa in Oguta LGA of Imo State.
“The Command’s Tactical Teams, stationed in the area on receipt of the distress call, immediately rushed to the scene. On arrival, they positioned themselves strategically and professionally and engaged the hoodlums in a fire fight (sic).
“For the operatives’ superior firepower and number, they were able to neutralise two of the hoodlums while others fled in disarray with bullet wounds into the bush. The police operatives tactically chased the hoodlums, in the process, combing the bush for the possible recovery of their arms and arresting the fleeing suspects. However, two locally made double barrel guns with seven live cartridges and 10 expended cartridges were recovered at the scene.
“During the attack, one of the police officers gallantly paid the supreme price while others were treated and discharged from the hospital for minor injuries they sustained. The corpses of the hoodlums were later deposited in Federal Medical Center Mortuary while an investigation is ongoing.
“The Commissioner of Police, Imo Command, CP Mohammed Ahmed Barde, psc(+), while consoling with the family of the officer who lost his life gallantly, advised the officers and men not to relent in their efforts until all criminal elements are apprehended and made to face the full wrath of the law.”
“He then appealed to Imolites for their continuous support and collaboration in giving the Police and other security agencies credible and timely information and to report any person seen treating bullet wounds or hiding within the community, to the nearest police station for prompt action. Also, he urged them to always make use of the command’s emergency numbers 08034773600 or 08098880197 in time of distress.”