2007-09-10 : 'Cops left me to be raped'

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2007-09-10 : 'Cops left me to be raped'

Postby GOSA » Fri, 2007-09-21 09:08

Relevance: "White took the police to court for failing to act on the
only legal means she had of protecting herself from her physically and
mentally abusive ex, truck driver Thomas White"

http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1 ... 184C266036

'Cops left me to be raped'
Karyn Maughan
September 10 2007 at 06:21AM

When Marilyn White tearfully begged the police to rescue her from her
child-sex abuser and mental patient ex- husband, they accused her of
being drunk and trying to punish a "kind man".

After the three officers refused to arrest White's HIV-positive former
husband, despite the protection order she had obtained against him,
the "kind man" told his terrified ex-wife she had made herself "look
like a c***". And later, in a drunken rage, he raped her.

Despite White's ordeal, the four-week illness she suffered as a result
of antiretroviral therapy and the anxiety she endured before she found
out she was not infected with HIV, the 50-year-old grandmother and
pharmacy worker has refused to remain a victim.

White took the police to court for failing to act on the only legal
means she had of protecting herself from her physically and mentally
abusive ex, truck driver Thomas White - and, after a four-year battle,
won a potentially major victory for victims of domestic abuse.

The East London High Court's ruling that the police were negligent in
failing to arrest Thomas White - who is currently serving a 21-year
sentence for rape, violation of a protection order and attempting to
throttle his wife - will be the subject of a leave-to-appeal
application by Minister of Safety and Security Charles Nqakula within
the next fortnight.

But if the judgment stands, it could open the door for hundreds of
damages claims against the police.

Speaking to The Star, White said she could still remember how, in
response to her pleas for help, the police had told her to "talk
nicely to this man, because he is talking nicely to you".

"I remember showing one of the officers the protection order (which
stated that it was illegal for Thomas White to be in her home) with
the warrant of arrest attached to it. He didn't even read it.

"I told them my ex-husband was out on bail pending his appeal for
indecently assaulting a 12-year-old girl but they weren't listening.

"I was sitting in tears, trying to tell them 'he is the problem',
while he was busy charming them."

White said she told an Inspector Ndzalo, a female officer later
promoted to captain, that her former husband was HIV-positive and had
been living in the Gonubie informal settlement with a 14-year-old

"She told me 'You can't say things like that'. She seemed offended.
When we walked out of my house towards the police car, I said to them:
'If you can't arrest him, then take me with you.' But they said no."

After enduring days of her ex-husband coming in and out of her home,
hinting to her 11-year-old son that he planned to kill her, and giving
her his dirty laundry to wash, White then suffered the ultimate
humiliation at his hands: her rape.

"I washed myself in Dettol and went to work the next day. That was
when I broke down," she said.

Acting Judge Leon Kemp was scathing in his response to the police's
claims that White had met them at the front gate of her home and told
them the problem had been resolved without ever showing them any
protection order, describing this evidence as "deliberately deceitful"
and ridden with "improbabilities and lies".

Queries by The Star revealed that the police's stance on
protection-order arrests varies from province to province.

Two weeks ago, Cape Town-based police officer Director Gideon Hagen
claimed there was a provincial document from the SAPS's legal
department stating that, despite a warrant of arrest being issued,
police can make an arrest only where there are signs of imminent
danger to a complainant.

He said this was due to a number of civil lawsuits against the SAPS
where people claimed they had been wrongly arrested. The police
currently face civil claims of more than R5,3-billion.

Gauteng police spokesperson Eugene Opperman, however, on Saturday said
they would "definitely" arrest someone who violated a protection

o This article was originally published on page 1 of The Star on September 10, 2007
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