Residents of Uwa Street in Benin City, the Edo state capital were thrown into pandemonium on Tuesday, as a middle aged driver (names withheld) allegedly beat to death a Police Corporal, Osas Agbonmwenma.
It was learnt that the deceased, until his death, served at St. Saviour Police Division, Benin.
The Corporal met his untimely death when his team accosted the driver for driving an unregistered vehicle during a routine patrol.
According to an eyewitness account, “the policemen ordered the driver to pull-over along Uwa Street by First East Circular Road Junction, on sighting him driving a car without plate number”
“The attempt by the policemen to forcefully take over control of the vehicle led to a physical combat between them as the driver grabbed the late Corporal policeman by the neck, so tightly that he became unconscious in the process”.
The eyewitness related further that attempts by other policemen to free their colleague from the driver’s grip by beating him harder failed to yield desirable result, as the fierce-looking driver persisted on beating the deceased until he became unconscious.
However, another version of the story had it that the driver was asked to drive the vehicle to the police station in company of the late Corporal, but purportedly diverted to an unknown direction, prompting the Corporal to forcefully stop around St. Maria Goretti Grammar School area.
Apparently provoked by the action of the policeman, the driver allegedly hit the Corporal on the forehead with an object.
The policeman it was gathered was immediately rushed to a nearby hospital where he died.
A motorist, Mr. Nosa Eribo, who witnessed the incident, blamed it on the overzealous of the policemen whom he alleged wanted to extort money from the driver by all means.
Reacting to the development, the Edo state Police Public Relations Officer, (PPRO) Noble Uwoh, confirmed the incident, adding that the driver and the car were in the police custody.
The Edo state Police image maker, added that investigation has begun on the matter, just as he advised members of the public to always be law-abiding and civil in their dealings with others.