A 24 year old man who was apprehended by operatives of Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of the Lagos State Police Command, for allegedly stealing a Black SAAB Saloon Car, with registration number, AAA 581 CG, belonging to his helper, has said that he will continue to steal the car because he's obsessed with it.
The suspect, Richard Akinwale, was trailed from Iju road, Fagba area, for about five hours by the RRS officers before he was eventually nabbed along Wempco road in Agindigbin.
A drop-out from Northern American University in Cotonou, Benin Republic, gained entrance into the living room of his victim, Adelabu Tolani, through the ceiling to pick the car keys and carted away the vehicle along with other valuables.
While arriving at the RRS’s headquarters, the suspect, who owned up to the crime, added that he stole the car and other valuables of his helper deliberately to punish him for forgetting his birthday.
The suspect disclosed that his victim, Adelabu has been the sole financier of his university education, adding that he picked him up when everybody rejected him.
In his words: “I was accommodated into the Adelabu’s home about five years ago. I was able to have been part of the Adelabus being friend to his wife’s brother right from the Church camp.
Living with him and his family was a privilege for me.
He sponsored my educational career before I dropped out from the institution at final year. His wife was also very supportive. But I deliberately committed the offence because they asked me to move out of their house”.
It was gathered that the suspect who had in the past stole the same vehicle along with other personal effects of the Adelabus pleaded for mercy from the car’s owner before the owner could secure his release at the Ogonbo Police division in Ajah area, where the case was initially reported.
“This was my second time I stole the car. The first time was on my birthday on July 8th, 2016. I took the car far away from their sight. I wanted to part ways with them with the car to start a new life on my own. I think I deserve the car because I had laboured for them for long time, and they can’t just eject me out of that house like that. They must pay me back with that car”, he added.
The owner of the stolen vehicle, Tolani Adelabu said that he regretted lending out helping hands to the suspect by accommodating him under his roof.
“In fact, I am regretting to have rendered help to him. I don’t know any of his relatives. It was my brother in - law who brought him from Church camp.
Then, I noticed that he needed accommodation and financial support, I kindly offered him without asking him to bring any of his relatives even his parents to me.
He used to be a very jovial and kind person before he left for his university education in Benin Republic, but I discovered immediately after he returned to the country, his life style suddenly changed for bad.
When I noticed this, I talked to him as a father and advised him to have a change of mind. While talking to him, he opened up that he was no longer interested in going back to the institution, and I asked him why, he never told the reason till now”.
The victim stated that he sent him packing out of his house because he might be a bad influence on his children, “I sent him out because I don’t want him to corrupt good character of my children because they are grown-ups too’, he added.
According to him, “When he stole the car for the first time, I reported the case to nearby police station in Ogonbo in Ajah area.
The Policemen arrested him the second day and he was detained for some days. After much pleading from him, I had to beg the DPO to release him that it was a family affair. I thought he would have a change of mind. To my surprise, after two days, he went back to my house to steal the car again.
This time around, I went to RRS’ office to report him. We laid siege for him around Iju in Agege, where we later apprehend him in Ikeja”.
He said probably the suspect already had a waiting buyer for the car. “It is possible that he has gotten buyer for my car because I can’t comprehend why he insisted in stealing the vehicle”, he noted.
He further said: “On Monday July 10th, 2016, my wife called me that she can’t find the car again.
She explained the suspect had gained entrance to our living room, took the car key and had absconded with it again despite the fact that we had changed all the keys to our apartment. But I was shocked to know that, he went through the ceiling this time around after entering the compound’’.
While confirming the arrest, the Police Public Relation Officers (PPRO), Superintendent of Police, SP Dolapo Badmus, said that all hands are on deck to rid-off the state from all nefarious activities.
The suspect has been transferred to Lagos State Task Force on Environment for prosecution.