Mr Anthony K. Kokroko, counsel for the Ghana Police Service, on Wednesday informed the Judgement Debt Commission that Corporal (Cpl) Felix Asante, who shot and killed Stephen Adanomah; a student of the Central University College in Accra, has being dismissed.
The counsel recounted that on December 11, 2008, a Police team on night patrol at Tesano in Accra received a distress call that armed robbers in a taxi were robbing people near the Ghana Telecom University College.
Mr Kokoko was addressing the Commission on behalf of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) on the payment of compensation to the family of Adanomah.
The counsel said that the Police responded to the call and came across the taxi that was on the wrong lane.
He said the Police chased the taxi and finally blocked it with their patrol vehicle at Dimples Traffic Light, in Accra.
Mr Kokroko said Cpl. Asante, who was part of the patrol team, alighted from the patrol vehicle and started firing, killing Adanomah, who was a passerby, and injuring a driver in process.
The counsel said Cpl. Asante’s statement to the Police indicated that he (Cpl Asante) accidentally shot and killed Adanomah in an attempt to deflate the tires of the taxi conveying the armed robbers.
Mr Kokroko, however, said according to other Police officers who were at the scene, Cpl Asante deliberately fired his gun because the patrol vehicle had blocked the taxi and that there was no way it could move.
The counsel said a disciplinary committee that investigated the matter, recommended that Cpl Asante should be sanctioned for killing Adanomah, and Cpl Asante was subsequently dismissed from the Ghana Police Service on October 4, 2010.
Mr Kokroko said he was not aware of the payment of GH¢42,000.00 judgement debt to the family of Adanomah, until the Police received a subpoena from the Commission.
Cpl Asante has filed a case at the High Court on March 8, 2012 for wrongful dismissal.
Mr Dometi Kofi Sokpor, Counsel for the Commission, wanted to know what the Police were doing about the case Cpl Asante brought against them at the High Court.
He said the Attorney General’s Department had written to the Police for their response, and the Police had already given them the Department a feedback
Mr Justice Yaw Appau, Sole Commissioner, asked the Police to pursue the case at the High Court so that the state does not incur another judgement debt.
He also cautioned: “All Police Officers must be security conscious and must handle weapons with great care”.
Mr Appau appealed to the Ghana Police Service to do proper background check on people they recruit to avoid employing criminals.
He advised that because the Ghana Police Service is a sensitive state institution, the Service must be circumspect in recruiting its personnel.
“We need strong institutions to work, and nobody including the President, the Chief Justice, or the IGP, is above the law. A lot of things are going wrong in the country and we must make sure the law works before we can move forward as a nation,” Justice Appau said.
He asked the Police to make public action that they would take against errant officers.
Justice Appua lauded Mr Kokroko for his excellent delivery as a representative of the IGP at the Commission’s sittings.
Mr Felix Nyarko-Ampong, Acting Director of Public Records and Archives Administration, was also at the Commission to brief it on how records are kept, challenges and constraints and measures being taken to enhance and improve proper records keep.
The Commission has adjourned sitting until Wednesday August 7, 2013.