2007-04-10 : Trainee cops accused of attempted hijack

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2007-04-10 : Trainee cops accused of attempted hijack

Postby GOSA » Wed, 2007-04-11 08:32

Trainee cops accused of attempted hijack

April 10 2007 at 01:03PM

By Dianne Hawker

Two student police officers are to appear in the Khayelitsha magistrate's
court on charges of common assault and malicious damage to property after
allegedly trying to hijack a man's car in Khayelitsha.

The student constables were arrested after allegedly beating 31-year-old
Vukile Kakaza while demanding the keys of the Renaut Clio he was driving.

Police spokesperson Billy Jones has confirmed that the two student
policemen, who were doing six months' training in the field at the time,
were arrested on Sunday night.

'There is a case of common assault'

They were freed on warning early on Monday.

"There is a case of common assault, which is assault without the use of a
dangerous weapon. There is also a case of malicious damage to property,"
Jones said.

Jones said the student constables were arrested after the vehicle they were
using - a detective vehicle registered to the Bellville Police station - was
identified as the vehicle used in the alleged attack.

"We are going to investigate whether they were given authorisation to use
the vehicle. If not, they will be charged internally," said Jones.

But the police insist that the incident was not a hijacking.

Jones said statements taken from witnesses by police indicated that the
incident had arisen from "an argument between the complainant and the
student constables".

"The statements make it clear that there were no elements of hijacking
involved," said Jones.

However, Kakaza and his family are shocked that the case has not been
registered as an attempted hijacking. The family say they fear the police
might try to cover up the incident.

Kakaza's sister, Fundisa Maya, who owns the Renault, said she had been
contacted by someone claiming to belong to the SA Police Service.

"I got a call from a private number. The person said he was a member of the
SAPS, a colleague (of the arrested policemen).

"He wanted to make an appointment for us to discuss payment for the damages
to the car and doctor's fees," she said.

Maya said the family was not prepared to withdraw the case.

"We want to take the case forward. We want to expose them if police are
robbing us. They are the people who are supposed to protect us," said Maya.

Kakaza and other family members who witnessed the incident say the two men
demanded the vehicle's keys.

Kakaza had driven to a nearby shop from his home in Lingelethu, Khayelitsha.

After leaving the store he noticed a white Citi Golf Chico following him

The driver then swerved in front of him before he could enter the driveway
of his mother's house.

Kakaza said the two men who got out of the vehicle approached him and
demanded the car keys. "I was very shocked," he said.

The men smashed the driver's side window of the vehicle with an empty beer
bottle, pieces of which still lay in the street on Monday afternoon.

According to Kakaza's mother, Lulama, by this time a number of people had
come outside to witness the commotion. Witnesses told the Cape Argus the men
repeatedly demanded the keys to the vehicle and did not identify themselves
as police officers.

Kakaza eventually managed to reverse away from the car and drove around the

The men followed, but were soon apprehended by police a block from the

"When they chased after him, I thought they were going to kill him," said
his mother.

The family were dismayed to find that the attackers have been identified as
police officers in training.

This article was originally published on page 4 of Cape Argus on April 10, 2007
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