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NEWS : Local News  

Armed Robbers Terrorize Kola Tree Community:…Murdered Student in Cold Blood in Sierra Leone
By Aruna Turay
Feb 3, 2009, 17:18
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Tension is reported to have mounted in a small community in the east end of Freetown called Kola Tree, located at Allen Town off Bai Bureh Road, when a group of armed robbers stormed the area, gunned down a resident and also broke into the premises of a Jay Cee (someone who just arrives from oversea), who reports say is on holiday from the United States of America. The incident is said to have occurred on Monday 2nd February 2009, with the armed robbers firing live bullets to terrify residents in the area.

The murdered student

According to the Assistant Inspector General of the Sierra Leone Police (SLP), Chris Charlie, the community came under the attack of armed robbers at about 2:00 am, and that the target was a Jay Cee, Francis Gombeh.

The window through which the robbers gained entrance into the house

He confirmed the shooting of one Mustapha T. Baweh, a student at the Government Technical Institute at Ferry Junction, saying reports indicate that he was shot while standing on a window overseeing the movement of the criminals.

The frustrated-looking Jay Cee, Francis Gombeh

According to him, one of the criminals saw the said student peeping at them and had cause to shot him to destroy evidence. The deceased is believed to be a relative of the Jay Cee.

Neighbours who stormed the area to sympathise with the affected persons

He further stated that the robbers used giant cutters to force their way into the house through the window.

Mr. Charlie went on to disclose that upon entering the house, the armed men placed the inmates including the Jay Cee under gun point and ended up carting away property worth millions of leones including raw cash and personal effects.

The robbers, according to Mr. Charlie, also temporarily abducted the Jay Cee who he said landed in Sierra Leone from the US on 24th January 2009.

AIG Charlie further informed that upon receiving the news, a rapid response team was dispatched to the area, but that the team was unable to effect any arrests due to the distance and the deplorable condition of the road. He said the police officers had to walk on foot for a considerable distance before reaching the scene of crime.

He however noted that the police are doing everything in their power to clamp down on the robbers, adding that an inmate of the house attacked has said she knows one of the assailants, believed to be leaving in the neighbourhood.

In an angry mood, the Jay Cee, Mr. Francis Gombeh, expressed utter dissatisfaction over the incidence and the police response time, saying he no longer feels save to leave in the country.

He said he deemed it fit to return home in response to the President’s call for Sierra Leoneans living in the diaspora to return home and help build their country. He expressed shock that this should be happening to him in his own country.

He said everything he had was stolen, with a mere pyjamas left with him.

Also speaking to this press was the wife of the deceased, Fatmata Kargbo, who maintained amidst tears that her husband was killed for no good reason.


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