‘My stepmum caused me to be kleptomaniac’

The cab driver, who resides at Gwagwa area of Abuja, and operates an unpainted taxi, was arrested and accused by police from Utako division of always running away with his passengers’ luggage.
But speaking with our reporter at the police station, the suspect pointed accusing fingers at his stepmothe, saying she is the cause of his problems. He said his stepmother bewitched him to be a kleptomanic.
“I have lived all my life being disgraced and humiliated because of my habitual stealing. I steal in the market and I also steal things not worth stealing. The urge just comes naturally to me and afterwards I would start regretting,” he said.
He said after he left the village for greener pastures in Abuja, he decided to start taxi driving to see if the spirit of stealing would leave him but all to no avail.
“As soon as I see my passengers, the desire to steal their belongings would come up and I would be restless until I run away with them. I always make the passengers trust me, after which I would either push them out of the car and run away with their goods or tell them to come down and carry it(from the booth), and when they come down, I zoom off,” he said.
A police source told our reporter that a complainant reported that his daughter engaged the services of the suspect, leading to both exchanging phone numbers.
“The complainant’s daughter exchanged phone numbers with the taxi driver because he was so polite to her. On Sunday which was the following day, the daughter called the taxi man to drop them at a park. The suspect conveyed both the complainant and his daughter to the park at Utako, opposite Mountain of Fire Ministry, Abuja. Immediately they reached, both dropped to check for available buses at the company’s booking station, while their luggage was left in the car but to their surprise, the suspect immediately drove with the luggage to an unknown destination,” the source narrated.
According to the source, when they both returned, they could not find the driver and their luggage and they immediately reported the matter to the police.
“When the man’s daughter called the phone number the suspect gave her, it was no longer available. We went to the network provider immediately, who provided us with his call log, we called the people that he called that afternoon and that was how he was traced and arrested,” the police source added.
When contacted, Utako Divisional Police Officer, Chief Superintendent Usman Umar, confirmed the incident, saying the offence is a case of theft punishable under Section 288 of the Penal Code.
“He ran away with the luggage and destroyed his sim card instantly. The money he stole was over N100, 000 cash. He had already hung the cloths he stole in his wardrobe, hid the complainant daughter’s handbag inside the ceiling and had already destroyed their ATM card. He has confessed to the crime and then accused his stepmother of bewitching him, which accounted for his stealing activities,” the police officer said.
He said the division is still investigating the matter to ascertain if he has other accomplices and advised residents to be careful in trusting a stranger and to make sure they patronize painted taxi drivers.

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