A 39-year-old Indian money lender was shot dead with a stolen AK-47 assault rifle by an off-duty police constable in Uganda’s capital city of Kampala over a 2.1 million shillings (Rs 46,000) loan, media reports said.
Kampala Metropolitan Police said that 30-year-old Ivan Wabwire was arrested after he opened fire at Uttam Bhandari on May 12.
Chilling footage from the crime scene showed how Wabwire fired multiple rounds of bullets at Bhandari from close range, according to Kampala-based newspaper Daily Monitor. Bhandari was the director of TFS financial services and Wabwire was his client, police said.
The two had a misunderstanding over the amount the constable owed to the firm. When Wabwire was told about the loan amount (2.1 million shillings) on May 12, he reportedly started arguing with Bhandari, claiming that the figure was inflated, the report said.
Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson, Patrick Onyango told the Daily Monitor that after shooting Bhandari, Wabwire abandoned his AK-47 rifle and fled.
Police have recovered 13 cartridges from the crime scene.
Wabwire has a history of mental instability and was banned five years ago from possessing a firearm after being admitted to a hospital twice over the mental breakdown, police said.
Wabwire, who is now being held at Busia police station in eastern Uganda, stole the gun from a fellow policeman and roommate, the report said.
Meanwhile, Deputy Inspector General of Police, Geoffrey Tumusiime Katsigazi, met the Indian community in Uganda and assured them of their safety, the news portal, Nile Post reported.
Uganda President Yoweri Museveni has demanded answers from security forces and questioned: “How an off-duty policeman accessed a gun.” “How are guns stored in the police? Did he (Wabwire) walk away from his guard post without permission with a gun to commit a crime? Is there no security at the site where the victim (Bhandari) was? Why did the local security allow an armed person who had no guard business into the building?” Museveni who is also the commander in chief of Uganda’s armed forces tweeted.
Uganda has witnessed a spurt in gun violence in recent times.
Earlier this month, a 26-year-old private security guard was shot dead by his colleague allegedly over a disagreement, the Daily Monitor report added.