By Onozure Dania
Lagos—THE 24-year-old man, Chizoba Okoye, standing trial on a count charge of false information on the whereabouts of the six children of Igbonla Model School, who were kidnapped in March, was, yesterday, killed by an Ikoyi Prison warden at an Ebute-Meta Chief Magistrate’s Court, Lagos.
It was gathered that the defendant, who was brought from the prison to attend court proceedings, had allegedly decided to escape after his case was heard and was being led by the prison warden out of the courtroom.
A source said after the defendant’s case was heard, he was being led by the warden to the court cell when he took to his heels and attempt by the warden to stop him failed.
The source added that the warden shot into the air to scare him from escaping, but that also did yield any result. As the defendant made an attempt to climb the fence, the warden shot him on his back and he died instantly.
According to the source, the warden was aiming for the defendant’s leg.
The body of the suspect was later removed from the court premises by the Ikoyi Prison ambulance.
Okoye was first arraigned on August 3 before Magistrate O. I. Adelaja.
He was charged with a count charge of false representation, preferred against him by the Police.
The prosecutor, Inspector Chinalu Uwadione, had told the court on August 8, when the deceased was arraigned on June 11 at about 8p.m., at Igbonla Moriden Epe Area of Lagos, that the deceased falsely represented himself as a member of the kidnapping syndicate that kidnapped the six children of Igbonla Model School Igbonla via Epe.
He said Okoye called the principal of the school and demanded a ransom of N2 million for the release of the students, claiming to know their whereabouts.
According to the prosecutor, the offence committed is contrary to and punishable under Section 6 (iii) of the Lagos State Anti-kidnapping Laws, 2017.
However, Okoye pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail in the sum of N1 million, with two sureties in like sum and the case was adjourned to October 26 for a mention.
The case was later adjourned to December 13 (yesterday).
At the resumed hearing yesterday, the magistrate further adjourned till January 17, since the deceased was still unable to perfect his bail conditions.
It was while being led out of the court, yesterday, that he tried to escape and was shot dead by the prison warden.