The Lapaz robbery incident, according to some eyewitnesses, was like a scene in an action movie!
Activities around the busy Accra metropolitan area of Lapaz came to a sudden halt Thursday afternoon when two armed robbers carried out a snappy but deadly operation near Las Palmas, a popular restaurant in the area.
It is believed that the two-man gang was on a robbery mission in the area, but attacked the policemen who posed as a restriction to them.
The incident which triggered deep fears among residents, has since become the talk of the town, with the police on grounds to fish out the dare-devil criminals.
How It Happened
The most pathetic part of the Lapaz robbery incident is that the policemen who came after the criminals were unarmed. Although their move is a brave act of patriotism, it was a really dangerous dash – unarmed versus armed!
According to the accounts of some eyewitnesses, the robbers who were masked and armed with local guns, shot the policemen who were giving them a hot chase at close range. One of them who reportedly got shot three times dropped dead, while the other was severely injured.
The robbers subsequently abandoned the motorbike on which they were riding, snatched an ash Hyundai Elantra saloon car from a motorist at gun point, and sped off towards Mallam junction on Kasoa road.
A short amateur video which has been circulating on the media showed how shop owners around the area, as well as road users, both passengers and passers-by looked on helplessly from a distance while the crime was being perpetrated.
Were the policemen armed, the hoodlums would not have escaped unhurt, considering the time they spent at the robbery scene.
Reacting to the Lapaz robbery and shooting incident on Joy FM, the Accra regional police director of operations, Chief Superintendent Kwasi Ofori, described the act as “callous and barbaric”.
He further explained that the unarmed police officers were assigned to the area to foster police-civilian relationship.
Meanwhile, some eyewitnesses alleged that some policemen on guard duties at a nearby microfinance bank refused to go to the rescue of their colleagues, but looked on as they were shot while pursuing the robbers.
According to a statement signed by ASP Effia Tenge of the Public Affairs Unit of the Accra Regional Police Command, the two Police officers were on their routine motorbike patrols within Lapaz at the time of the unfortunate incident.
ASP Tenge revealed that the motorbike initially used by the robbers, as well as the Hyundai car they subsequently snatched, are unregistered.
The injured police officer is currently on admission at the Police Hospital and is in stable condition, the police statement also confirmed.
The Police appealed to the general public to remain calm and support the police in their effort to arrest the perpetrators by volunteering useful information to police numbers 18555, 0302787373 , 0302 773695, 0302773906.
Below is a copy of the police statement.
IGP David Asante Apeatu has also placed a GHC10, 000 on the two armed robbers.