Bayelsa State Police Command on Thursday warned residents against taking the law into their hands.
The admonishment followed the lynching of a suspected phone thief by a mob in Yenagoa on Wednesday.
Angry residents of Green Villa Road in Yenagoa rescued a victim from the suspected thief who allegedly tried to dispossess him of his mobile phone at gunpoint.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported that residents who rescued the supposed victim meted jungle justice on the assailant as he was set ablaze before the police arrived at the scene.
Residents said some people at the scene made a distress call to the police, but that the police arrived late.
Reacting to the incident, police spokesperson in Bayelsa, SP Asinim Butswat, condemned the lynching and expressed regret that the response team got to the scene when the suspect had already been burnt to death.
He urged members of the public to refrain from taking the laws into their hands.
“The Bayelsa Police Command condemns the mob action on a suspected armed robber at Green Villa, Biogbolo, Yenagoa.
“An angry mob chased the suspect, beat him up and burnt him to death before the arrival of the police.
“Police hereby caution members of the public against taking the law into their own hands,’’ said Mr Butswat, a superintendent of police.
He added that investigation into the incident was on-going.