A police corporal with the Imo State Command is currently in trouble for raping a nursing mother, who had gone to the station to seek refuge.
Saturday Sun gathered that Mrs. Maureen Anyalebechi, from Umukabi Autonomous Community, in Ngor Okpala Local Government Area, Imo State, had, on November 10, 2012, gone to Umuguma Police Station to pass the night, when she could not locate the residence of her brother in the World Bank area of Owerri West Local Government Area.
Owing to the fact that it was late in the night, Mrs. Anyalebechi went to the police station with her seven-month-old baby, where she met Corporal Chigozie Odenigbo and another female police officer.
The victim told Saturday Sun: “When I discovered that it was late to continue searching for my brother’s place, I decided to go to the nearby police station, to beg them to accommodate me for the night because it was already late.
“As I went in there with my baby, I met two police officers, a lady and a young man, and after explaining my situation, the male officer asked me to follow him to one officer’s house, where he claimed mosquitoes would not bite my baby and I thanked him and followed him innocently, but to my greatest surprise, the policeman pounced on me. He hit me from behind and before I knew what was happening, he snatched my baby from me and flung him away. He was holding me by the throat to stop me from shouting for help and started raping me.”
She revealed that after the police officer had satisfied himself, he helped her to her feet and also picked up her baby and took her back to the police station. Mrs. Anyalebechi further narrated that when they came back to the police station, the female officer was alarmed when she saw that her clothes were torn and asked Corporal Odenigbo to explain what happened to her. The corporal, she said, denied ever doing anything to her.
Mrs. Anyalebechi said that she had to report the matter to the Divisional Police Officer, when he arrived for duty in the morning, who promptly ordered the arrest and detention of Corporal Odenigbo. She told Saturday Sun that to her surprise, the policeman was released. Sensing that the police wanted to cover up the crime, she had to contact a lawyer, who took her to the Imo State Police Commissioner, Bolanta Adisa, last Friday, who summoned the DPO of Umuguma Police Station.
Saturday Sun learnt that upon the confirmation of the rape assault on the nursing mother, CP Bolanta ordered the arrest of Corporal Odenigbo, promising that thorough investigation would be carried out.
He said that if found culpable, the policeman will be prosecuted and dismissed from the Force.
Meanwhile, the police spokesman, Mr. Vitalis Onugu, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said that Corporal Odenigbo will face administrative trial.
Saturday Sun also learnt that Corporal Odenigbo was alleged to have sexually assaulted a female officer some months back.