Bust: Cop charged in hit-and-run deaths of pastor, pregnant wife

2010-05-04 00:00

A POLICE sergeant appeared in court in Hibberdene yesterday in connection with the deaths of a priest and his three-months-pregnant wife.

Samson Ndelu (66) a his wife Thulisile (40) were found dead in the bushes near the R102 in uMthwalume in the Park Rynie area on Saturday morning.

Siyabonga Soni (32) of Creighton police station was arrested on the same day after police found the vehicle involved in the crime at a panelbeating workshop in the area.

It is believed that it belonged to his brother and that after the accident, which happened at about 2 am, he dragged the Ndelus’ bodies off the road into the bush.

Road Traffic Inspectorate (RTI) spokesperson Zinhle Mngomezulu said Park Rynie RTI officers found the bodies after they were alerted by an unknown caller.

“At first the officers thought the couple had been murdered and dumped in the bush, but on closer inspection they discovered that it was a hit-and-run. It’s unclear when the couple were killed,” said Mngomezulu.

Family member Sphamandla Nxumalo said Ndelu and his wife were returning from a night vigil when the accident happened. They had gone to the vigil on Friday evening and were walking back home, which is about 150 metres from where they were killed.

Nxumalo said, “The irresponsible act of a law enforcement officer has left the family devastated. There is no way of explaining the pain because such treatment is not expected from a law enforcement officer. The least he could have done was to phone the ambulance or the police before running away.”

He said he believes that the life of at least one of the Ndelus could have been saved if an emergency rescue service had been summoned to the scene.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Phindile Radebe said evidence at the scene showed that the couple had been hit by a car.

“The vehicle was found later in the day at a panelbeating workshop and upon inquiring about the owner, the police were led to Creighton police station where Soni was arrested,” said Radebe.

Soni appeared in court at Hibberdene yesterday on charges of culpable homicide and of failing to stop after an accident, and was granted R3 500 bail.

The allegation that he dragged the couple off the road after the accident will be investigated.

 

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