Police Under Pressure - Dead Inmate Family Demands Probe
Family members of the late Mohammed Diallo, an inmate, who died in police cell Sunday at the Airfield police station A.K.A Salem Depot in Sinkor, are demanding explanation from authorities of the Liberia National Police on the cause of death.
This paper gathered that the deceased had been in prison since the 20th of April for owing one of his colleagues LD430. Mohammed is said to have met his untimely death when the Commander of the Salem Depot, Harry Bai allegedly pepper sprayed the cell, which left three inmates fainted and allegedly led to his demise.
According to some former inmates, who had fallen victim of the spray, Mohammed may have died as a result of suffocation. Sakou Diallo Fofana, identified by family sources as an elder brother of the late Mohammed, said the police are yet to provide detail on circumstances that led to their brother’s death.
Fofana explained that his brother was not sick and described him as a very calm boy in the community. He blamed Commander Harry Bai for his brother’s death, noting Bai has no reason for allegedly spraying the cell with pepper spray.
He said the Liberia National Police is not being fair to the Fula Community, because Commander Bai, who is linked to the death of Mohammed, is still going about his normal duty at the depot.
Another family member said she does not believe news of the death of Mohammed. “That’s lie. It is not true; he is not dead; why the policeman should killed our brother and they are hiding it from us. We saw it in the paper before we could know”, she said in anger and tears.
Meanwhile, residents of the Airfield Community are calling on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to intervene in bring to justice the alleged murderer of Mohammed.
Some of the community dwellers said Commander Bai usually brags that he can do anything and nothing will come from out of it because he is a member of the Mansonic Craft or masonry. This paper was also hinted that Bai some time ago seized a junior officer ID card and asked her to go to his house for it.
There also report that he allegedly slapped and jailed a young lady, who went to entertain herself at the Shark Entertainment Center when her phone was snatched by criminals after she refused to buy gas for the generator at the police station.
Sources close to Bai said he is law unto him running the police station like his private home. Residents of the Airfield community have threatened to protest if the police do not take serious action against Commander Bai.
Bai has declined to talk to the media since the incident, police spokesman George Bardue has confirmed that family of the late Mohammed Diallo has not been told what led to his death. Bardue said investigation was still ongoing into the incident and after completion the police will come up with an official statement. He however called on the family to remain calm, while the probe was ongoing.