The Imo State Police Command has refuted a report that its officer allegedly killed an operative of the Department of State Services, DSS, in the state.
VELOXNEWS had reported that a DSS operative, Prince Nwachinaermere Ezemuonye Ozuzu was killed allegedly by an unidentified police officer with the state’s joint task force around the Mgbidi – Awo/Owerri Onitsha Road.
The deceased brother, Destiny Nwozuzu, disclosed that the 38-years-old was shot four times allegedly by a police officer.
Nwozuzu said his brother, who was also a member of the joint task force, was shot by the police officer while trying to fire warning shots in response to a supposed gunmen alleged to be firing gunshots.
Another source who pleaded anonymity told VELOXNEWS correspondent that the police and his colleagues were shooting indiscriminately when a stray bullet hit the DSS officer.
In a bid to confirm the report, VELOXNEWS reached out to the spokesman of the state Police command, Michael Abattamwhen.
Abattamwhen, who did not confirm or deny the incident, said: “I don’t have such information yet. If a police officer had killed somebody, we should know by now.
“You can go to the DSS for further confirmation my brother.”
In a bid to further balance the report, VELOXNEWS tried to reach out to DSS, but efforts proved abortive as our correspondent was told that the secret police does not have a spokesperson at the state level.
Following the publication, Abattamwhen issued a statement denying the incident.
Abattam said the report was a “calculated attempt” to “embarrass” the command.
A statement by the Command’s spokesman reads partly: “The Command viewed this with all seriousness and believed it to be a calculated attempt by the publishers to incite, dent and embarrass the already gained popularity the Command has built over time and also to cause disaffection between security agencies in one hand and the general public on the other hand.
“The attention of the Imo State Police Command has been drawn to a false news making the rounds on social media published by a national newspaper – Daily Post Newspaper dated 5th of October, 2021, captioned ” HOW A POLICE OFFICER ALLEGEDLY KILLED A DSS OPERATIVE IN IMO ” . This is most unfortunate and the Command is pained by this publication especially when it’s from a notable newsprint.
“It is unfounded that a national newspaper will publish a story without verifying the same to ascertain the facts and even when told by the police authority that there was no such incident recorded involving any police officer will still go ahead and publish the same.”
Meanwhile our reporter reached the PPRO who denied knowledge of the incident. His interaction with our reporter reflected in the first report.
But the police insisted that, “The Command viewed this with all seriousness and believed it to be a calculated attempt by the publishers to incite, dent and embarrass the already gained popularity the command has built over time and also to cause disaffection between security agencies in one hand and the general public on the other hand.
“While the command frowns at this unverified report, may I state emphatically here, just to set the record straight that, there was no recorded incident on 4th October, 2021, involving a police officer from Imo Command at Mgbidi – Awo/ Owerri Onitsha Road, Imo State.”
Police refutes report of alleged killing of DSS officer by it’s men