Cops not given ‘shoot to kill’ order

Main Stories, National

The National, Friday July 26th, 2013

 THE police hierarchy did not issue a shoot-to-kill order for prison escapees William Kapris and Raphael Walimini, NCD-Central divisional commander Jim Andrews revealed yesterday.

“There was neither an order from my office nor that of the NCD metropolitan superintendent to shoot and kill the two escapees,” he said.

“The order was for the normal process for police to apprehend, arrest and return to the police station.”

Notorious bank robber Kapris and convicted murderer Walimini were shot dead by police along the Hiritano Highway between Red Hill and Camp 48 near Gabadi, in Central, on Monday night.

Assistant Police Commissioner Andrews also confirmed earlier suggestions that no operational name was given to the joint police and Correctional Service manhunt that took place after Kapris, Walimini and Michael Warangu escaped from Bomana jail on May 14.

The three were each armed with pistols. Warangu was shot dead within hours of the escape, allegedly by Bomana warders as he was crossing the Laloki River.

“I want to make it clear to the public that I did not issue an order for police to kill them on sight,” Andrews said.

“Policemen do return fire in the event of a shoot-out with criminal elements.

“At such times when they feel that their lives are at risk, they will use minimum force to apprehend criminals.”

Andrews said Kapris and Walimini were killed because the policemen engaged could have felt their lives were in danger.

He added that police had recovered two pistols from the scene of the shooting.

According to a police source, an order was required for operations such as manhunts for escapees and other criminals. 

“An order must be submitted to the police operations centre so that an overview can be maintained on that operation. The order will also form a vital part of a coroner’s inquest.

“There are criminal procedure and investigations laws governing such operations.”

Meanwhile, the bodies of Kapris and Walimini are still at the Port Moresby General Hospital morgue awaiting a coroner’s inquest.

“Upon completion, the Correctional Services commissioner, who is the custodian of the state prisoners, will release the bodies back to the families and relatives for burial,” Andrews said.