A mob on Saturday set a suspected thief ablaze in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital.
The incident occurred around the Customs Road junction in the Biogbolo-Epie suburb along the Isaac Boro Expressway.
The suspect, whose identity could not be ascertained, was said to have been caught for allegedly stealing an expensive phone from a victim.
It was gathered that the fair-complexioned youth, said to be in his early 30s, was among a three-member gang who specialised in using a tricycle popular called ‘Keke’ to rob their targets of their valuables.
However, the two other gang members escaped while he was caught by some members of the public, following the alarm raised by a victim who allegedly recognised the gang members.
When our correspondent visited the scene, smoke was still smoldering from the remains of the suspect, who was burnt to death with a tyre.
About four policemen and their patrol van were also sighted at the scene with a crowd of passers-by catching a glimpse of the burnt person.
Some eyewitnesses said he was allegedly wielding an AK-47 rifle when the mob attacked him, forcefully dragged the gun from him and put the tyre around his neck, and set him on fire with petrol.
One of them, who pleaded anonymity, said, “He stole a very expensive phone. They were three in number in a Keke. He was holding (an) AK-47 gun, the two others ran away but they caught him.
“The people (mob) collected the gun from him and brought one tyre, which they put around his neck and light fire. I heard his girlfriend was here, she said she warned him not to go for the mission (crime). The people called the police after they set him on fire.”