Barely 18 days after gaining freedom from the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) Panti in Lagos, a 23-years old man, Godwin Nwankwo, was Wednesday re-arrested by operatives of the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of Lagos State Police Command, for allegedly vandalizing bridge railings and crash barriers on Ijora Bridge.
Police say he was arrested on same offence about three months ago.
Police source disclosed that the suspect was arrested when he was bringing out some cut-to-size railings and crash barriers from manholes which were meant to reinforce Ijora Bridge from vibrating as well as protect vehicles from falling off from the bridge.
The suspect, who spent 44 days in the police’s detention, stated that he stole the railings because he was desperately hungry and there was no alternative means for him to get money.
“When I was arrested for the first time, I pleaded for leniency and mercies. Now, I have been caught again, I don’t know what to say again. All I can say is that it was the devil that pushed me into this act”, he said.
The suspect said when he was released from the police’s custody, things were very hard for him and every means to make ends meet was very difficult, thus making him to go back to the crime.
“I had to go back to the act of vandalizing the bridge when I had nothing on me to cater for myself. I am regretting my action but it is too late for me now”, he told journalists.
He explained that he was looking for money to relocate as life had become difficult for him in Lagos. “My plan was to raise some money to enable me relocate to Enugu, where I repair handsets before coming to Lagos. I want to leave Lagos because my life has been meaningless here”, he stated.
While confessing to the crime, he revealed that he sold the stolen railings to one Alhaji Talimu Sanni and another man, now at large, in Ijora area of the state.
His revelation led to the arrest of one of the main receivers of the stolen railings, Talimu Sanni, the following day.
The 54 year-old receiver owned up to the Police, explaining that he bought the railings from the suspect about six weeks ago. He claimed he never knew they were stolen.
The State Police’ Spokesperson, Superintendent of Police, SP Dolapo Badmus, who confirmed the arrest, added that anyone involved in the act would be brought to book.
“We are intensifying our efforts to arrest anybody vandalizing Government’s infrastructure across the state. This stride has begun to yield positive results as some of them have been arrested and they are facing prosecution at the moment”, she said.