Unidentified gunmen on Thursday attacked a police patrol team in Anambra, leaving three officers dead.
1st News reports that the incident occurred along the Nimo-Neni link road in Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra.
Eyewitness accounts claim that three policemen were killed in the gun battle; adding that their rifles were carted away by the gunmen who set the police patrol vehicle ablaze. However, the Police Command in Anambra said only one officer was confirmed dead at an undisclosed hospital.
Tochukwu Ikenga, a Deputy Superintendent of Police and the Command’s Public Relations Officer, confirmed the incident. He said the gunmen numbered about 20. Further, he revealed that the gunmen, who came in three Toyota Siena buses and motorcycles, engaged the policemen in a gun duel.
He said the gun battle lasted about 30 minutes before the assailants fled the scene after reinforcement was mobilised.
“There was an attack on Police patrol team at Okacha junction, Neni in Anaocha by yet to be identified gunmen on March 18 at about 4:30 pm. The hoodlums, numbering over 20, engaged the policemen in a gun duel for over 30 minutes; before reinforcement from the state headquarters arrived, forcing the hoodlums to escape.
“As a result, two police operatives sustained gunshot injuries and were rushed to the hospital for medical attention; where one was confirmed dead by a medical doctor,” he stated.
Ikenga said the Commissioner of Police, Mr Monday Kuryas, visited the scene; adding that investigation is ongoing to unmask those behind the attack while assuring that they would be hunted down and prosecuted.
Meanwhile, 1st News reports that the incident is the latest in a growing trend of attacks on police operatives in Anambra and other parts of the South East.