To the surprise of many bystanders, marketers, students and commuters who had gathered at the nation’s biggest market in the commercial district of Redlight in paynesville, outside the capital yesterday, April 16, 2015, to see the Zone Five Police Depot f the Liberia National Police ablaze.
The violent action was reportedly perpetrated by a group of angry motorcyclists towards the early evening hours of Thursday, April 16.
The motorcyclists reportedly went on the rampage when one of their colleagues was allegedly killed by a police officer assigned in the market.
According to an eyewitness, Madam Sarofina Kibie, the incident occurred when the policeman (named not mentioned) reportedly struck the neck of the victim with his baton leaving him unconscious after he (the victim) ran through a roadblock mounted by the police on the GSA Road in Paynesville
The victim, believed to be in his early 30s, was quickly rushed to the Benson Hospital where he was later pronounced dead by the hospital authorities.
It was following the announcement of victim’s death that motorcyclists, in their numbers, stormed the grounds of the Redlight Depot, setting it on fire and damaging two police pickups assigned at the depot there, while traffic police officers-reportedly seen as the prime targets, ran for their lives.
The riot, which started at about 3pm Thursday afternoon, destroyed hundreds of goods and of property, while several peaceful citizens, including students sustained injuries while escaping the scene.
Sarofina Kibie- a school teacher, pointed out that after 30 minutes of scuffle between armless police and the rioters (motorcyclists), it took the riot Police of the Liberia National Police- Police Support Unit and Emergency Response Unit and soldiers of the United Nations Mission in Liberia or UNMIL sometimes to put things under control.
However, following the restoration of calm, the Commercial District of Redlight was declared a “no-go-zone” for motor-cyclists and car-loaders.
When Police Spokesman Sam Collins was contacted via mobile phone for the perspective of the LNP on the incident, both official and private cell phones rang endlessly with response.
Police in Monrovia, a few days ago, arrested and are interrogating an Armed Forces of Liberia personnel, identified as Private Winn Gonsee, 43, for allegedly killing a motorcyclist- Nelson Cuput, in the Thinker Village Community on the Robertsfield highway in Paynesville.
According to police preliminary investigation, the incident took place early Tuesday morning, following a scuffle, an eyewitness told police investigators upon arriving on the scene of the incident.
Police investigators revealed that upon arriving at the crime scene, the victim was seen lying in a pool of blood with suspect Winn Gonsee of Armed Forces of Liberia or AFL standing over his helpless victim.
Nelson Cuput, 40, was pronounced dead upon arrival at a local hospital in Monrovia by Medical Doctors.
Suspect Gonsee is currently in police custody at the Headquarters of the Liberia National Police undergoing police investigation.
The High Command of the AFL has already welcomed the arrest of Private Gonsee, pledging its full cooperation with the police in conducting a comprehensive investigation leading to a successful prosecution.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor