From: Paul Osuyi, Asaba
There was pandemonium, on Monday, in Asaba, Delta State capital, when a gang of five armed robbers stormed a branch of an old generation bank in an attempt to rob a customer who had come to the bank deposit huge sum of money.
However, the customer, a middle-aged man, was shot in the chest region at close range because of his refusal to let go of the bag of money.
Although the victim later gave up the ghost on the way to the hospital, his rare display of courage ensured that the robbers did not cart away the money as he staggered into the bank premises after he was shot.
An eyewitness told our correspondent that the incident occurred at about 8.15am, adding that residents in the area scampered for safety at the sound of the gun.
Besides, about five policemen stationed at the bank premises took to their heels during the operation, with three of them removing their uniforms in order not to be identified as security operatives by the enemies of state.
According to the eyewitness, the bandits who operated in a blue Golf car had been around the bank’s neighbourhood for over an hour before the arrival of their target who came to the bank in a commercial tricycle popularly known as Keke Napep.
“Three of them sat close to my shop for hours, before a man was coming towards the bank and they quickly walked towards the man (victim) who carried a black bagco bag of money and started dragging the bag with him at gun point while urging him to release the bag.
“We saw them dragging the money with the man, I thought it was one of the movie scenes, you know these Nollywood people do use Asaba very well for acting movies.
“But before we knew it, they shot the man. It was at this point that everyone, including the policemen took to our heel while the victim held on the bag of money and struggled into the bank where he fell on the ground,” the source said.
The source added that after the robbers failed to get hold on the bag of money, they rushed into their get away car which parked few meters away from the scene of crime.
“They were in the car for sometime before the car refused to start to immediately. But nobody, not even armed policemen who had removed their uniforms dared to challenged them until they finally zoomed,” the eyewitness added.
Meanwhile, the victim who was in the pool of his blood was said to have been rushed to the hospital by the bank officials, who gotten hold of the money, buts gave up the ghost on the way. His corpse was deposited at the mortuary of the Federal Medical Centre (FMC).
Public Relations Officer of the state police command, DSP Andrew Aniamaka who confirmed the incident said the matter was already being investigated.