How driver and prime suspect in Abeokuta couple’s murder faked death to escape from police custody

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The prime suspect in the gruesome murder of a couple, Kehinde and Bukola Fatinoye, in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, has escaped from police custody.

According to HorizonTimes, the suspect identified as Lekan escaped from police custody at Ibara Police Divisional Headquarters, after his arrest on Tuesday.

A source who spoke on condition of anonymity revealed that the escape of Lekan remained a top secret within the police hierarchy.

NewsClick Nigeria had earlier reported how the couple were butchered  in the early hours of January 1st, at their Ibara GRA home shortly after attending a crossover service at Christ Anglican Church, Iporo-Ake, Abeokuta.

The pool of their blood was said to have been mopped by the assailants before setting their remains on fire.

They were suspected to have been trailed to their residence from the crossover service.

Mrs Fatinoye, in distress, was said to have called her son severally, who went to a separate church for the crossover night with the housemaid.

Both the son and the housemaid were said to have suspected a distress and immediately returned home.

The two of them were also captured by the assailants who tied them and kept them inside the boot of their car and dumped inside a river along Obada-Oko area of the State capital.

According to reports, the housemaid escaped from the river as the rope with which he was tied was said to be loose. He swam out of the river, but was immediately arrested by the police.

The remains of the deceased son, Oreoluwa, was recovered by the police from the river two days later.

The housemaid who was at the scene of recovery with the police but in handcuffs caused a stir when he started shouting that he knows one of the killers.

The suspect while being returned to the custody, suddenly stopped walking and shouted that he saw one Lekan on the day the couple were being buried.

While screaming, he said, “I am not a kid, I know those who wanted to kill us. I told them to hold him yesterday. They have allowed him to escape.

“I am not a kid. I know what I saw. Would I not know the person that wanted to kill us. I saw him yesterday and I said ‘hold him’. They have allowed him to escape.”

When someone among the family asked him who could the person be, he said “brother Lekan,”

There was said to have been a pin-drop silence immediately he mentioned Lekan’s name.

The suspect, who was the driver to the deceased Mrs Fatinoye, for almost two years was later arrested and taken into custody at Ibara Police Station.

Narrating how Lekan escaped from the police, the source revealed that at the point of taking statement from Lekan, he slumped and was almost lifeless, not known the police that it was only a pretense and a ploy to escape the lawful custody.

Lekan was said to have been quickly rushed to a police clinic at Zone II not far from the Secretariat of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Iwe-Iroyin, in order to ‘rescue’ him so as to help the police in its investigation.

While trying to ‘rescue’ him, Lekan suddenly woke up, caught the health workers unaware, took to his heels and escaped from the scene.

Another source privy to the information informed HorizonTimes that Lekan was ‘revived’ by the health workers but requested to ease himself, before he escaped from the scene.

The Source who resides close to the police station revealed that the suspect who was dressed in a Jalabia, escaped trough the front of the Ogun State Deputy Governor’s Lodge and scaled fences through former Head of Interim Government, Late Chief Ernest Shonekan’s house.

The source further said that efforts by the police to re-arrest the suspect proved abortive, adding that there were sporadic gunshots while the police chased the suspect.

The State Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi declined comments on the development when contacted.

Meanwhile, the Police has launched a manhunt for the escaped suspect by declaring Lekan wanted.

A ‘wanted’ message carrying Lekan’s picture has been in circulation since Thursday, but curiously. Not with any police insignia.

But another source who was also privy to the information revealed further that the message was first shared on a police WhatsApp loop.

The message read, “Wanted! Wanted!! Wanted!!! This is the guy suspected to have been part of the culprits that murdered a couple in Abeokuta on the New Year’s Eve. His name is Lekan. He is currently at large and has been declared wanted by the Police. Anyone who knows or sees him should contact the nearest police station.

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