Sounds of gunfire covered Lira district Wednesday morning as police battled residents who wanted to snatch a suspect from Lira Central Police Station. For almost two hours, business in the municipality was on a standstill as residents pursued one Sylus Otim, 23, a resident of Jinja Camp, accused of breaking into a shop in the area.
Armed with stones and sticks, the rowdy residents stormed the police and engaged police in running battles, saying that they wanted to lynch the suspect before police let him free. They said that the suspect was among the group that broke into the shop.
During the clash, a trader identified as Hebert Amatha was shot and injured by the stray bullet. He is currently receiving medical treatment from Charis Medical Clinic.
Lira District Police Commander Joel Tubanone said they used live bullets and tear gas to contain the crowd and block locals from hijacking the suspect. He said the move also aimed at saving the life of the suspect.
In March 2018, rowdy residents killed and later burnt the body of Solomon Odongo, an armed robbery suspect who was accused of shooting a mobile money operator at Jinja Camp in Lira town.