Armed robbers attacked a Church House in Ogun State on Monday killing three cops who tried to prevent their escape.
The 15-man robbery gang invaded the Apostolic Church Mission House, Ijemo-Agbadu area of Abeokuta, the Ogun State Capital, at about 1.45 a.m.
Three cops of the Ogun State Police Command, who engaged the robbers in a gun duel for about 45 minutes, were killed, while two others were injured.
The robbers were said to be acting on information that a huge sum of money was kept in the mission house. While some reports state that the robbers, who jumped over the church fence to launch the attack, made away with money; another report states that the robbers could not locate the church fund. The robbers, after gaining access to the premises, destroyed the burglary proof and ransacked the building, residents said.
Police sources said that while the robbery operation was going, the Rapid Response Squad of the police, led by two inspectors, got a distress call, and raced to the scene.
The bandits engaged the cops in a gun battle, killing three of them including the two Inspectors. Two other policemen were injured and have been admitted at Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta.
The activities of the robbers caused many houses in the area to be riddled with bullets. Three vehicles parked on the roadside were also damaged with bullets. Some of the occupants of the church house said the attack was the third carried out by the robbers on the mission.
The Pastor of the Church, Jacob Adeotan,said that the robbers held residents hostage while the operation lasted.
Mr. Adeotan, who conducted our correspondent round the compound, said the gang, numbering about 15, scaled the fence of the church before their violent operations
“As you can see, they broke the burglary proof, gained access into many apartments before ransacking,” the pastor said. “They operated for about 45 minutes, and engaged in sporadic shooting when police patrol team arrived.”
The Spokesperson for the Ogun State Police Command, Muyiwa Adejobi, said about 300 used pellets was recovered. He said efforts were on to get the bandits, and called on members of the public to assist with information.
The Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, has reportedly visited the two admitted policemen at Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta. He was accompanied by Commissioner of Police, Ikemefuna Okoye.
Meanwhile, the corpses of the three policemen have been deposited at the morgue of the State Hospital, Sokenu, Abeokuta.