A member of a three-man robbery gang met his waterloo last Sunday when he was caught by residents of Egan in Igando area of Lagos State and lynched.
Saturday PUNCH learnt that the gang laid siege to Moshalashi area of Egan about 2 am on that day and later went to Fatoki area of the same community where they attacked the apartment of a retired soldier.
The robbers reportedly raped the pregnant wife and 70-year-old mother of the retired soldier. Another young woman was also reportedly raped in the house.
A resident, who pleaded anonymity, told our correspondent that news of the robbery circulated around the community as it occurred that early morning.
“We learnt that they put a gun to the head of the man as they raped his wife and mother. But I think the man must have resolved to fight back in the face of being killed because we heard he struggled with them.
“Two of the robbers escaped while one was caught. No one is sure who caught the robber. It might be the Odua People’s Congress vigilante operatives,” the resident said.
Our correspondent could not confirm the veracity of rape claims as the house where the rape allegedly took place was locked when our correspondent visited the place.
It was learnt from other residents that the community woke up to see the burning body of the suspected robber, who had been decapitated.
The body of the alleged robber was put on display at Fatoki Junction until last Tuesday when it was removed by council officials.
When our correspondent was making enquiries about houses attacked by the robbers at Fatoki, an okada rider, Shina Aliu, took him to a friend of his, whom he called Yusuf.
“They also attacked Yusuf’s house. They beat him mercilessly after robbing him,” he said. But Yusuf instantly denied it. “Nobody robbed me,” he told our correspondent.
Aliu later said his friend did not want to speak because he was afraid.
Many residents of the area showed the same level of resistance when our correspondent attempted to ask them about the incident.
Our correspondent was told that they feared police arrest because the residents resorted to “jungle justice.”
A member of the community development association in Fatoki, told our correspondent, “This place is robbed regularly not because the police are powerless, but because the nearest police station, Igando Police Division, is far away.
“You can see the road around here as well, how will the police access this place easily if they are to come to our rescue? This area is almost inaccessible.”
A police source at the Igando division told our correspondent that nobody from the area had made any report about the robbery.
Our source said, “All the report we got was that there was a corpse lying on the road suspected to have been that of a lynched robber. Nobody would say who he was and nobody would say he saw anything.
“There was no single lead for us to go on with. We have even invited some people with the hope of getting some information to help us. Nobody said anything. We later informed local government officials who went to remove the body.”
Residents put the age of the alleged robber at between 25 and 30.
Our correspondent contacted the Deputy Police Public Relations Officer for the state police command, Mr. Damasus Ozoani, to find out if any report had reached him about the incident, but calls to his line went unanswered.