Ladies and gentlemen of the Press, we are pleased to present to you the outcome of our Special Investigative Findings submitted by the committee comprising the Professional Standards Department and the Investigative Team on the Kingsville Shooting incident and other Police updates.
Kingsville Shooting Incident Investigative Report
As a law enforcement institution, one of our cardinal responsibilities is to protect lives and properties of all persons irrespective of who they are, appear or found to be (victim and or suspect). The Liberia National Police is the premier and frontline service provider to the public in this 21st Century of our law enforcement history. Her actions or inactions speak volume to the public and the world at large as she performs her statutory duties and responsibilities within the public space. Hence, it is against this backdrop that all members and officials of the Liberia National Police are held liable as a matter of training to act beyond reproach as they handle all situations and people encounter during and off duty, particularly those who are considered to be aggressors.
Ladies and gentlemen of the Press, upon being informed of a shooting incident in Kingsville #7, District #1, Montserrado County on June 24, 2019, the LNP Administration immediately recalled the officers who responded to the incident and mandated the Professional Standards Department along with an Investigative Team (IT) to investigate circumstances surrounding the ‘Shooting’ incident at Kingsville # 7 on the Monrovia Kakata Highway which resulted to injuries and subsequent death of one person, namely:
- Saah Saah, age 18, sustained injury on his left foot;
- Dave Mombo, age 18, sustained injury on his left leg tibia; and
- Abraham Tomay, age 17, sustained injury on his head resulting to death.
In addition, Insp. Morris Dahn of the Police Support Unit, and Sgt. Gbornima Barmabia of the Montserrado County Police also sustained injuries in the leg and head respectively. These officers were initially treated at C. H Rennie Hospital in Margibi County and referred to the John F. Kennedy Medical Center.
Synopsis of the Investigation
While the Liberia National Police was at the verge of reaching a logical conclusion of the investigation into the mysterious deaths of the two children, Thomas Kollie, age10 and Elijah Porluma, age 9 of the Kingsville Township, #7, some aggrieved residents of Kingsville Township, Montserrado County, staged an illegal protest on Monday, June 24, 2019 by setting-up road blocks thereby obstructing the free flow of human and vehicular traffic.
According to the aggrieved residents, their protest was triggered due to the alleged delay in the police investigation regarding the mysterious deaths of the two children.
Upon receipt of the information about the illegal protest, the authority of the Liberia National Police dispatched the Careysburg Detachment led by its Executive Officer (EO) to ascertain the situation. Based on the feedback from the EO, a ten-man Police Support Unit team led by Inspector Vincent Abban was also dispatched on the scene of the illegal protest to negotiate with the rioters to have the road blocks removed.
All efforts to dialogue and negotiate with the rioters to have the road blocks removed by responding officers and other prominent citizens including Hon. Lester Binda, Superintendent of the Careysburg Statutory District, and Hon. James Porkpah, Assistant Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Health proved futile.
As a result of the escalation of the violence, the Careysburg Police were unable to contain the situation, thus, causing C/Supt. Johnson to report the escalation to authority through the appropriate chain of command. Subsequently, PSU officers headed by Insp. Vincent C. Abban took charge of the incident. As the negotiation failed and the PSU attempted to remove the road block through riot control tactics, the rioters started throwing stones according to some by-standers at which time there was shooting by Police officers.
Findings of the Investigation
In view of the investigation conducted thus far, the following counts constitute facts and circumstances surrounding the incident in Kingsville #7, Montserrado County to wit:
- That, on June 24, 2019, at the early morning hours, group of aggrieved residents of Kingsville #7 staged a riot in demand of justice for the mysterious death of two children, Thomas Kollie, 10 years old and Elijah Porluma, 9 years old, claiming that the police investigation into the mysterious deaths has delayed.
- That, Det. Alvin Page of the Crime Against Persons Unit/CSD/LNP is being investigated by the Professional Standards Department on “Alleged Corruption” thus receiving money from some residents of Kingsville under the pretense of transporting suspects to court, reference the mysterious death of the children mentioned in paragraph one under the findings of the investigation.
- That, the aggrieved residents set up several road blocks along the Monrovia Kakata High Way at Kingsville #7 impeding motorists and pedestrians’ movement that resulted to a team (one section) of Police Support Unit (PSU) Officers responding to the scene.
- That, the total of six LNP Officers were in possession of Firearms (C/Supt. Philip O. Johnson, Insp. Morris M. Dahn, Sgt. Emmanuel S. Melikamue, Patrolman Thompson Pobleh, Patrolman Ernest M. Kurah, Patrolman Josephus M. Lewis
- That, prominent citizens; Hon. James Porkpah, Assistant Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Health, Hon. Lester Binda, Statutory Superintendent of Careysburg District and C/Supt. Philip O. Johnson, General Commander of Zone-11 negotiated with the rioters, but they, the rioters refused for the road block to be removed. Additionally a ten man team of PSU headed by Insp. Vincent C. Abban responded from Kakata City due to their proximity to the scene, negotiated with the rioters to disengage from their violent actions, clear the road and seek lawful means, but all efforts failed.
- That, Insp. Morris M. Dahn, Patrolman Thompson Pobleh, Patrolman Josephus M. Lewis and Sgt. Emmanuel S. Melikamue discharged their assigned weapons during the protest.
- That as the result of the escalation of the violence, the Team Leader, Insp. Abban who also served as the driver for the team, got in the assigned vehicle, avoided supervision of his officers, drove away from the concentrated area without prior notice to his officers. He stated that he relinquished his power of supervision to the deputy team leader; Morris M. Dahn. Thus, the team was left unsupervised which led to an unauthorized discharge of firearms. This action on the part of the Team Leader contravened LNP Duty Manual Chapter 126.96.36.199 which states “All Commanders, Managers and Supervisors shall be subject to supervisory accountability for the actions of subordinates if the superior knew or should have known of acts, omissions or facilitation that constitutes a violation of any section of this Duty Manual, including section 3.1.1; or that constitutes a crime or foster a climate of corrupt practices; and they fail to take remedial and required action.”
- That, a medical report, ‘Medical Certificate of Cause of Death’ dated 25, 2019 was received from Du-Side, Firestone Medical Center bearing name Abraham Tommy, ‘Male’ age 17 and a resident of Kingsville # 7. Said document mentioned that Abraham Tommy died as the result of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) as the result of Penetrating Head Injury.
- That victim Saah Saah was discharged on Tuesday, June 25, 2019 by the John F. Kennedy Medical Center while victim Dave Mombo was transferred from the D-side Hospital in Kakata, Margibi County, and is currently undergoing medical treatment at the John F. Kennedy Medical Center.
- That, the justification provided by these four officers that they had to discharge live bullets in the air claiming that their lives were in danger is a complete contradiction of LNP Policies and international standards on the use of firearms by law enforcement officers. According to police best practice, if the subject officers reasonably believed that their lives were in danger, they should have put stop to the threat by shooting directly to the targets which endangered their lives and the lives of others in line with the Use of Force Continuum; and the option to discharge live bullets in the air lacks necessity, reasonability, proportionality and right judgment.
- That, the investigation received the medical reports from the C.H. Rennie Hospital, Kakata City, Margibi County, dated July 3, 2019, reference Insp. Morris M. Dahn and Sgt. Gbornimah Barmabia injuries they sustained respectively. The reports revealed that Insp. Dahn was rushed to the hospital with a bleeding right leg laceration that was treated and later referred him for further investigation and review at the J. F. K Medical Center same day while, Sgt. Barmabia was carried to the hospital with multiple soft tissue injuries especially on his face and bleeding profusely. He was attended to with basic first aid intervention at the facility and later referred to the J. F. K Medical Center for more specialized care.
0.8.0 Administrative Actions
In view of the above mentioned, the Administration of the Liberia National Police has taken the following actions:
That accused officers, Insp. Morris M. Dahn, ID #:0784, Sgt. Emmanuel S. Melikamue, ID # 0765, Patrolman Thompson W. Pobleh, ID # 2680 and Patrolman Josephus M. Lewis, ID # 4537 are being been appropriately disrobed, interdicted with 2/3 salary payment in accordance with Part IV, Section 22.91, letter ‘h’ of the LNP Act of 2015, and turned over to the Crime Services Department for criminal investigation for discharging their firearms illegally which resulted into serious bodily injuries of three persons; Saah Saah, Dave Mombo and Abraham Tomay and subsequently leading to the death of Abraham Tomay at the Du-Side Hospital in Harbel Firestone on June 25, 2019.
- That, the responding PSU Team Leader, Insp. Vincent C. Abban, ID #0444 has been dismissed from the Liberia National Police for breaching the LNP Duty Manual Chapters 188.8.131.52 and the Police Support Unit Standard Operating Procedures & New Organizational Structure Chapter 5.3 paragraph two, leading to poor supervision that resulted to some of the officers under his supervision discharging their firearms consequentially leading to the death of one person, Abraham Tomay and injuring two persons, Saah Saah and Dave Mombo. Additionally, he did not adhere to the operations order “NO LETHAL WEAPON”. Furthermore, the use of firearms could have been avoided had Insp. Abban disengaged and wait for backup as he was advised by one of the team members, Josephine Sackor as established by this investigation.
- That, Commissioner Walter B. Wray II, Head of the Operations Department, has been suspended one month off the job with the appropriate salary cut and referred for Leadership training after serving the suspension for failure to follow through the PSU team scope of operation, when he had earlier ordered the use of tear gas to remove the road blocks as confirmed in his observation paragraph 3, first sentence “ I did not get any information until the DIGP/ADM & Acting Inspector General, Hon. Sadatu Reeves (U-101) called and informed me of shooting in the Kingsville area and someone was wounded”, Commissioner Wray II, asserted.
- That, DCP. Godfrey K. Kollie, has been suspended for two months off the job with the appropriate salary cut and will be sent for Leadership training after serving the suspension for his failure to designate someone in the Chain of Command to act in his absence. Additionally, he failed to submit an incident report through the chain of command about the incident. Furthermore, he failed to comply with request from this investigation to produce a written report within 12 hours after the occurrence of the incident as stated in the Police Support Unit Standard Operating Procedures & New Organizational Structure Chapter 5.3 paragraph two which states “Immediately, after an occurrence of an incident involving the use of force or firearms or other items of law enforcement equipment and regardless of whether or not such use resulted in death or injury to people or damage to property, the member of PSU concerned must verbally inform the PSU Commander through the chain of command followed by a written report in Annex “J” hereof, including the details of the incident within twelve (12) hours from the time of its occurrence”.
- That, ACP Wadell Kwabo, has been suspended for three months off the job with appropriate salary cut and will be sent for Leadership training after serving the suspension for his failure to delegate responsibility to other Command level Officers assigned within the ranks and files of the Police Support Unit, since indeed he was on the another scene, situation which led to endangering the lives of members of Liberia National Police, the civilian and public at large.
Investigative Report into Mysterious Death of two kids in Kingsville
Distinguished members of the Press, the Liberia National Police has investigated, charged and forwarded to court two suspects, Samuel Sayou and P. MulbahYanbakulo Circumstantially with murder.
On June 3, 2019, Suspects Francis Dennis, age 32 , Jomah Dolo, age 38, Amos Porluma, age 49 and P. Mulbah Yanbakulo, age 65 were arrested in the Kingsville Community following the discovery of the decomposed bodies of the missing children.
During police preliminary investigation, there were several allegations and accusations made by some residents of Kingsville Township, # 7, but these allegations/accusations of the involvement of suspects Francis Dennis, Jomah Dolo and Amos S. Porluma are yet to be established.
It was revealed that two children identified as Thomas Kollie and Elijah Porluma, residents of Kingsville Township, Montserrado County were sent by their guardians, Bendu Boakai (grandmother of Thomas Kollie) and Garmah Daniels (mother of Elijah Porluma) to sell on Thursday May 30, 2019 and Friday May 31, 2019 but went missing and did not return home. The missing children case was reported to the LNP on June 3, 2019.
After being informed of the missing children with the support of the members of the Kingsville Township, the Liberia National Police launched a massive investigation/ search for the missing children and discovered their dead bodies on the out sketch of Kingsville Township, #7, in a community called ‘’Over Comer’’. The bodies were discovered under a reed bush twenty nine (29) paces from suspect Samuels Sayou bitter-ball garden and sixty nine (69) paces from suspect T. Mulbah Yanbakulo’s house respectively, which are in closed proximity of the discovery scene that any normal person could smell the foul odor from the decomposed body.
A fifteen member Coroner Jury was set up to conduct inquest on the two victim’s bodies and came up with findings of foul play in the death of the two kids. The bodies were turned over to their respective bereaved families headed by their fathers: Morris Kollie and Henry F. Porluma for funeral rites based on their request to the Liberia National Police and also due to the decomposed state of the bodies. During the investigation, suspect Samuels Sayou was also arrested on June 8, 2019.
In view of the circumstances, coupled with evidence adduced, the investigation resolved to charge suspects Samuel Sayou and T. Mulbah Yanbakulo circumstantially with murder in violation of Chapter 14, Section 14.1 of the revised penal Code of the Republic of Liberia.
Investigative Report into Alleged Aggravated Assault Case
The Liberia National Police has investigated and charged, suspects Philip Peters, age 48 and Annie S. Wilson, age 43, a Police Officer assigned with the Women and Children Protection Section of the Liberia National Police with the crime of Aggravated Assault in violation of Chapter 14.20 Sub-Chapter B, Section 14.20 of the New Penal Law of the Republic of Liberia.
According to investigative findings, the two charged suspects while on their way to service Sunday, June 30, 2019 instructed little Rose Samyo, age 10, to stay home on grounds that her hair was not plaited. Upon their return from church, the victim could not be seen until at approximately 11:00 PM, until she was seen in a school building.
The investigation revealed that the suspects believed to be her parents allegedly flogged her thereby sustaining serious bodily injury and locked her up until the next morning when they left for work.
In view of the circumstances and evidence adduced, the suspects, Philip Peters, age 48 and Annie S. Wilson, age 43, a Police Officer assigned with the Women and Children Protection Section of the Liberia National Police are charged with the crime of Aggravated Assault in violation of Chapter 14.20 Sub-Chapter B, Section 14.20 of the New Penal Law of the Republic of Liberia pending court trial.
Shooting Incident in Sinoe
On Thursday, July 4, 2019 at 1900hrs, the Liberia National Police received reports from Sinoe County of one of its officers, Sgt. Joseph L. Abdullah of discharging his firearm which resulted to the death of a man identified as Mohammed Kamara in the Fish Town Community.
Upon receiving the report, Sgt. Abdullah was immediately disrobed and turned over to the Professional Standards Department for investigation.
The LNP regrets this sad incident and assures the public of its commitment to ensuring that justice is served the bereaved family.
The public is urged to remain calm as the investigation continues.
New Georgia Road Incident Investigative Report
On June 27, 2019, the Administration of the Liberia National Police mandated the Professional Standards Department to investigate Chief Inspector Humphrey Kahn for illegally discharging his firearm on June 25, 2019, in the St. Michael, New Georgia, Gardnersville while attempting to arrest a stolen motorbike suspect.
The PSD investigation revealed that Chief Inspector Kahn after illegally discharging his firearm failed to report same to authorities of the LNP.
The LNP leadership also ordered authorities of the Police Support Unit to be investigated for undue delay in informing authority of the shooting incident.
Officer Kahn and the head of the PSU, Wadell Kwabo (U-121) were immediately disrobed and turned over to the Professional Standards Department for investigation.
After the conduct of a thorough investigation into circumstances of the illegal discharge of firearm by Chief Inspector Kahn, the Administration of the Liberia National Police has with immediate effect dismissed Chief Inspector Kahn from the services of the Liberia National Police.
Budget Bureau Community Shooting
On Sunday, June 30, 2019, the Administration of the Liberia National Police mandated the Professional Standards Department to investigate Chief Inspector Peecho F. Worjloh for illegally discharging his firearm on June 30, 2019 in the Budget Bureau Community, Capitol Hill, Monrovia.
The Administration of the Liberia National Police has with immediate effect dismissed Chief Inspector Worjloh for illegally discharging his firearm while under the influence of alcohol.
Ladies and gentlemen of the Press, let this message resonate to all officers of the Liberia National Police that this administration will leave no stone unturned to take punitive measures against any officer who acts out of his/her call of duty or off duty.
Members of the public are also encouraged to report any act of misconduct on the part of any of our officers.
While we are resolved to take appropriate action(s) on any of our officers in terms of misconduct, we also urged the public to desist from engaging themselves into acts of lawlessness especially illegal protest which results to setting up of road blocks and other forms of violence which violates the rights of other peaceful citizens. Members of the public are especially urged to use legal means to resolving issues affecting them/ their communities.
I thank you!