Inspector of Police allegedly beats woman to death

AN Inspector of Police, Bassey Peter Ikpe, serving at Anti-Cult Section of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID) has allegedly beaten to death one Deborah Nkereuwem Nkpenie, but the Police authorities say the report was fabricated.

According to a Twitter user, @JohnsonNtia, the incident occurred at the Akwa Ibom State Police Command.

In a telephone conversation with The ICIR, the prosecuting counsel, and the leader of a human right group in Akwa Ibom, Clifford Thomas confirmed the incident.

In a document made available to The ICIR, it revealed that the deceased before the incident had filed for the enforcement of a fundamental human right, following the repeated harassment she received from the inspector and her three stepsons.

Victor Nkereuwen Mkpenie, Mkpenie Nkereuwen Mkpenie and Aniekan Nkereuwen are the three stepsons of the deceased.

They had reported a civil matter based on inheritance right and sharing of properties of the late husband of the deceased to the said police, “who thereon tutored them to frame up a lame charge against the deceased,” Clifford said.

According to the document, the said police had repeatedly threatened the deceased to come to the police station, so they can appear in court on a fictitious criminal charge against the warnings of the Deputy Commissioner of Police of the state command, S.U. Horsefall.

Horsefall had warned Ikpe against the violation of police regulation and procedure which had been obviously trampled upon by his incessant threats to the deceased, advising him to bring all parties for interview.

Horsefall had issued this warning on January 15, a penultimate day to the event of her murder.

On January 16, the document stated that the inspector had gone to her (the deceased) home, entered her room, dressed the deceased himself, then forced her out despite pleads from the deceased to be taken to the hospital.

The deceased had lamented on her ailing health to Ikpe, but all fell to deaf ears, as he insisted she lied about her state of health.

The sister to the deceased, Obonganwan Itoro Friday who reportedly witnessed the incident of her death, said, “the deceased suffered from high blood pressure; waste pain arising from dislocation while caring for her late husband; difficulty in movement” which had left her incapacitated.

However, Ikpe had forced the deceased out and on getting to the precinct of the police state headquarters, he “repeatedly hit the head of the deceased on the metal door frame of the tricycle that conveyed her to the state police headquarters”.

Clifford said such action by the inspector, “was to prove the deceased was lying and faking the fact of her ill-health, while he tried to pull her out of the tricycle by force”.

Moreover, Clifford revealed that the said police and his three accomplices (Stepsons of the deceased) had given out information about her ill-health, stating that persistent harassment from the said police would facilitate her death.

On the discovery of her death, Clifford said the police personnel “rushed to the gate and informed the detachment of police personnel not to allow the KeKe drive back into the compound.

“He also reported to his superiors that he did not have any interface with the deceased that morning and that she died in the hospital at the state clinic of the Akwa Ibom State Secretariat Complex. Abak Road, Uyo”, Clifford said.

File photo of the deceased, Deborah Nkereuwem in a KeKe after allegedly beaten by Inspector Ikpe. Photo credit@JohnsonNtia/Twitter

‘The information was false and fabricated’

However, in a telephone interview with The ICIR, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in Akwa Ibom, Diko Mcdon had denied such an incident ever occurred, he described such report as frivolous and false.

“That information is frivolous. That information is false. That information is not true to the fact. The police wouldn’t have beaten an aged woman,” Mcdon had denied reports of Ikpe beating up the deceased.

“The truth of the matter is that the woman was arrested having to do with an offence that was committed and then she was taken on bail. Her family took her on bail.

“In fact, on her arrival in the facility where she was arrested, she was sick. She complained of being sick. It was on that ground that she was granted bail and she left.

“Only for her, in the course of treating her and while the case was still pending; while she was on police bail, she died,” Mcdon stated.

“For someone to now fabricate the story that police will be the one to go beat such an old woman. What did she do that she would be beaten?.



    Mcdon said any contrary report was fabricated because the said police had no interface with the deceased.

    The sister to the deceased, however, demanded justice and that the culprit is made to serve the law.

    Among other inquiries to investigate, Clifford said, “Given orderly room trial to inspect Bassey Peter Ikpe according to standard police process and if found culpable, dismiss him and recommence his trial for murder to the ministry of justice”.

    Meanwhile, the Criminal Code Act stipulates in Section 319, sub-section 1 that, “Subject to the provisions of this section any person who commits the offence of murder shall be sentenced to death”.

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