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A joint team of Goa and Karnataka Police Sunday arrested a former security guard of an apartment complex, Rajkumar Singh (21), in connection with the murder of perfumer Monika Ghurde.
“Mobile and debit card of Monika were missing and we put both under surveillance. We got the first glimpse of the suspect from the ATM at Porvorim, and subsequently we verified his photograph with the apartment inhabitants,” said DIG Vimal Gupta.
They added that on Friday, he made several cash withdrawals and swipe transactions using the debit card at a shop in Gandhi Bazaar in south Bengaluru. “We alerted the local police and shared the picture of the suspect that we had procured,” SP (North Goa) Umesh Gaonkar said.
The Bengaluru city police obtained the CCTV footage from the shop where Rajkumar was seen, and later, during checks, a lodge owner at Cottenpet told them that a similar looking person had checked-in Friday.
“At around 1 pm, he came back to the hotel and the joint team nabbed him,” Gupta said.
Police officials said that Rajkumar was dismissed after residents complained about his performance. A senior police official involved in the investigation said Rajkumar directly held Monika responsible for the loss of his job. In his statement to the investigators, he said that a few months back, Monika had complained to the residents’ association about a missing umbrella, which was found in his possession.
“…the association took the complaint seriously and fired him. This, coupled with loss of financial means, drove him to target the victim,” police said, citing Rajkumar, who hails from Bathinda in Punjab.
Rajkumar reportedly told authorities that he went to Monika’s residence on October 5. “When she opened the door, he threatened her with a knife and demanded money. Monika offered her debit card instead and pin number,” the official said.
Later as Monkia tried to snatch the knife and scream, Rajkumar, the official said, tried to muffle her voice with a pillow. He claims to have tied her to the bed thinking that she was unconscious and might scream for help again. Asked if the victim was sexually assaulted, the official said: “It’s a sensitive matter, subject to serological examination report…”