Marble-Hall – A police constable was on Saturday, 23 May 2020 evening, killed in Kwaggafontein outside Marble Hall while attending to a hijacking in progress.
According to police Constable Thabo Mduli and two colleagues, a sergeant and another constable, were on routine patrol duties in Kwaggafontein area and while driving along the R573 road in Vlaklaagte, the three came across a Toyota Corolla on the side of the road with hazard lights flashing.
Brigadier Leonard Hlathi, Mpumalanga Provincial Police Spokesperson, said as the three members approached the vehicle, it sped off. Police followed the car resulting in a high-speed-chase for a few kilometers until it stopped.
Hlathi said one of the suspects suddenly alighted from the car and without warning, began shooting at the police.
“The police returned fire but Constable Mdluli was hit. While the other two uninjured members were attending to Constable Mdluli, the suspects fled the scene on foot. A remaining occupant in the Toyota Corolla told police that the suspects that fled the scene were holding him hostage after they had hijacked his vehicle. He alleged that three other suspects were in a white sedan that had a blue light. The sedan left as soon as they hijacked him. However, before the suspects could drive off with him in the car, the three police officers arrived,” explained Hlathi.
He said the province had implemented a 72-hour activation plan and all the necessary resources needed to investigate the incident had been mobilized.
“The members that escaped the attack have been afforded the initial debriefing as prescribed by the Employee Health and Wellness. The family of the deceased member will also be afforded the necessary bereavement support,” said Hlathi.
National Commissioner of the South African Police Service, General Khehla Sithole, sent condolences to the family and called on the team investigating the incident to make sure that they trace and arrest the perpetrators.
“We need to do everything possible to find these people masquerading as police officers and roaming around hijacking unsuspecting law abiding citizens. These suspects must be arrested and made to face the full might of the law both for the killing of our colleague as well as for the hijacking,” said Sithole.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the suspects is requested to send tip-offs on the MySAPSApp or to contact the SAPS crime stop number 08600 10111. All information received will be treated with strictest confidence.