Gulu residents and motorbike (boda boda) cyclists today morning stormed Gulu Central Police Station demanding the handover of two suspected thugs.
The angry residents and boda boda riders wanted police to hand over the suspects who were arrested this morning. The suspects stand accused of robbery.
The growing mob claimed that police would later release the suspects without charge.
But Patrick Jimmy Okema, the Aswa regional police spokesperson, declined to hand them over. He explained to the sceptical crowd that police needed the suspects to help identify their accomplices.
The crowd wanted to lynch the two suspects who they believe are part of a gang responsible for the murder of three boda boda riders in Gulu this month.
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When the mob threatened to vandalise the Land Rover to be used to transport the suspects, Police fired tear gas, rubber and live bullets to disperse them.
The two suspects were apprehended by boda boda riders as they allegedly tried to con a woman who had withdrawn money from Crane Bank. They were saved from instant mob justice by a local councillor who rang up police to rescue them.
Recently the police and the Uganda People's Defence Forces (UPDF) in Gulu teamed up to fight crime. This follows a spate of robberies and deaths related to armed robbers. Today's arrest brings the number of suspected robbers arrested to 17 in the last 2 months. Four guns have been recovered in Acholi subregion.
Meanwhile Innocent Aloyo, a Mega FM journalist and two other people are nursing serious injuries after they were knocked by a speeding police vehicle this morning. The journalist is being treated at Gulu referral hospital.