Dele Ogunyemi, Warri
A suspected car snatcher has been killed by an angry mob on Aroh Road in Ughelli, Delta State, after a failed attempt to snatch an SUV from the middle-aged owner, identified simply as Mr Atarhe.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the unidentified young man was a member of a two-man car snatching gang operating in the area.
It was learnt that the gang members accosted the owner of the SUV as he was exchanging pleasantries with someone and ordered him not to move.
But, Atarhe zoomed off and the robbers opened fire on the vehicle, but he was able to escape to report the incident at the nearest police station.
Luck, however, ran out on the deceased robber when angry residents mobilised to give the duo a chase and he was eventually apprehended.
Sources said before the arrival of policemen, the mob had killed the suspect after recovering a locally-made cut-to-size pistol with bullets from him, while his accomplice escaped.
Another source stated that after shooting the SUV owner, the suspected robbers started shouting “thief, thief” in order to distract residents.
But those who recognised them apprehended one of the robbers with a loaded gun, while the other escaped.
While narrating his ordeal, Atarhe stated, “Around 4.30pm, I left my home and as I was driving, I stopped at my Christian brother’s shop to exchange pleasantries with him.
“Just as we were talking, two boys came to either side of the car. The one on the passenger side told me not to move and that if I moved, he would shoot me.
“But because my car’s engine was still running, I zoomed off and immediately he noticed that I disobeyed his instruction, he shot at my hands and I struggled to drive to the police station; from there, I was rushed to hospital.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relation Officer, DSP Onome Onovwakpoyega, confirmed the incident and promised to provide an update, especially on the fleeing suspect, after necessary contact with the Divisional Police Officer of the area.
She, however, had yet to contact our correspondent as of the time of filing this story.