Acquitted cop ‘overjoyed’

2012-11-06 00:00

PROVINCIAL traffic officer Siyabonga Dlamini (24) of Greytown was overjoyed yesterday after high court Judge Isaac Madondo acquitted him of murder.

A beaming Dlamini, who was defended by advocate Connie Geldenhuys, said the verdict had ended a three-year ordeal for him and his family.

Unsure and afraid of the possible verdict he would face, he said he told his mother not to come to court for the judgment yesterday.

Judge Madondo ruled that Dlamini’s version that he acted in self-defence when he shot and killed Imbali teacher Sihle Ndlovu (26) was probable and was supported by the evidence of doctors and a ballistics expert.

The court found there were many unsatisfactory aspects that emerged during the evidence of a single eyewitness for the state, who testified that Dlamini deliberately gunned down Ndlovu while he was taking cover in a vehicle.

The shooting occurred outside the Plough Hotel in Greytown on the night of December 10, 2009.

Dlamini said he had gone to the tavern on the night to exchange some beers for cider and to buy cigarettes.

While at the counter he was pickpocketed and suspected a youth whom he had seen making a hasty exit.

He confronted the youth who denied pickpocketing him.

On leaving the bar Dlamini said he was confronted by a group of four or five men, including the suspect.

They set upon him, assaulting him and kicking him with booted feet, causing him to fall to the floor.

He said Ndlovu hit him over his head with a pool cue.

He drew his pistol and fired two warning shots in the air, and then as Ndlovu continued assaulting him, he fired shots at him.

Dlamini said he fled from the scene and drove straight to the police station to report the incident, still bleeding from his head.

The judge said the fact that he had sped from the scene to the police station meant that he did not have time to manufacture the statement he made to the police.

• ingrido@witness.co.za

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