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28.10.2008 Crime & Punishment

Cop Kills Cabbie

By Daily Guide

About a hundred taxi drivers last Friday staged a demonstration at the East Legon residence of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, flag-bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), to express their anger about an incident in which a policeman shot and killed a taxi driver in the area.

The deceased, Samuel Danso, popularly known as 'Sammy', had two live bullets pumped into his body by an unidentified policeman who was reportedly trailing some armed robbers.

When news of his death reached his colleagues at the Tetteh Quarshie Interchange, they immediately drove to the East Legon Police Station to  find out the facts but got infuriated when one of them, popularly known as 'Fire', was arrested and detained for allegedly disturbing public peace.

The drivers, wearing red headbands, alleged that the police had told them that Sammy was shot because he was involved in an armed robbery incident.

They further told DAILY GUIDE that they staged the demonstration to draw the attention of Nana Addo to the episode because he has a record for defending human rights and they believed he would intervene and help them get justice.

The drivers also explained that they took that path because they had strong belief that that Nana Addo would be the next president.

The drivers maintained that their killed colleague was not an armed robber, thus they were demanding an explanation for his death.

They went on a temporary sit-down strike and refused to work until a representative of Nana Addo assured then that their requests had been heard and that the necessary interventions would be done to unsure that the right thing was done.

Officials at the East Legon Police Station said they were not in a position to comment on the matter because the docket had been forwarded to the Legon Police Station.

ASP Richmond Bonsu of the Legon Police Station told DAILY GUIDE yesterday that investigation into the issue was still underway, and that it would be premature to say that the killed cabbie was an armed robber or not.

ASP Bonsu said though it was true that the deceased was shot by a police officer, reports available to him were that there was crossfire at the scene and the driver was shot in the process.

Meanwhile, eyewitnesses told DAILY GUIDE that there was no crossfire and that the driver was shot by a policeman who was not in uniform.

They said Sammy was driving on a narrow road when he saw the police vehicle approaching so he slowed down for the police van to pass.

They said Sammy tooted his horns for the police vehicle to move fast but the vehicle rather stopped, and the policeman got down, cocked his gun and shot two bullets into the taxi driver. The driver's lifeless body was then dragged into a car and sent away.

ASP Bonsu however insisted that there was only one eyewitness and that the person might have some prejudice against the police, hence his crooked narration of the incident.

In a related development, the Tetteh Quarshie Taxi Drivers Union and the family of the deceased have called for an independent enquiry into the issue, and expressed lack of confidence in the police.

They maintained that the deceased was not an armed robber. Sammy was survived by a wife and two children.

By Halifax Ansah-Addo