By Jethro Ibileke
Apprehension has gripped Umutu, in Ukwuani Local Government Area of Delta State, following the killing of three police operatives of the Divisional Police Headquarters based in the town.
It was gathered that the felled operatives were killed by unknown gunmen about 7.40 am on Wednesday at a checkpoint mounted by the late officers along the Obeti/Oliogo Road.
Local sources told our correspondent that the hoodlums also set ablaze the Toyota Sienna patrol vehicle recently donated to the Umutu police division.
It was also gathered that the gunmen set the dead operatives ablaze inside the patrol vehicle.
“Three police officers attached to the Umutu Division Police Headquarters were attacked and killed on arrival to a checkpoint between Obeti and Oliogo in Ukwuani Local Government Area of Delta.
“They were burnt beyond recognition in their patrol Toyota Sienna,” a source in the area alleged.
Following the incident, palpable tension is said to have gripped residents of Umutu, Obeti and Oliogo and other neighbouring communities, for fear of a reprisal attack on the communities or indiscriminate arrest by police authorities.
As at the time of filing this report, no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Also, efforts to confirm the incident from the State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Bright Edafe, proved abortive.