By Jimitota Onoyume
PORT HARCOURTâ€”A POLICE Inspector, whose name was given as William Ezeogu, sustained severe bullet injuries MondayÂ around Elimgbu part of Rivers State during a fierce gun encounter with fleeing kidnappers being chased by the police. According to the state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Dr Rita Inoma Abbey, the fleeing kidnappers disappeared with theÂ A.K. 47 riffle of the inspector while he was writhing in pain.
She said the Police in the state got a distress call that one Mrs Rita Oparocha of the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing in the state capital had beenÂ kidnapped around Rumuokuta Girls Secondary school by four heavilly armed men while driving into her compound. She said the police immediately deployed a patrol vanÂ to block a likely escape route of the kidnappers.Â In the ensuing exchange of fire, she said, the patrol van went up in flames owing to shots from the fleeing kidnappers, adding that two innocent civilians were hit by stray bullets.
She said the fleeing kidnappers met another thick wallÂ of police men around Elimgbu, and it was at this point that Inspector Williams was hit by bullets and dispossessed of his rifle by the fleeing kidnappers.
The PPRO saidÂ another police team, however, took on the kidnappers around Eneka area, thus forcing them to abandon a Honda car where another hostage who was later identifed as Mrs Milicent Texas, a Ghanian, was rescued.
The PPRO said the released hostage is married to a Nigerian, adding that efforts were still on to track down the fleeing kidnappers.