Man dies after shooting hijackers

2009-10-23 00:00

A DURBAN man was killed in a botched hijacking that has left one suspect dead and another critically injured.

The “wild west” shootout between the victim and the suspects took place at the intersection of 7th and Pine streets in Pine­town just after 9 am while the victim was putting up advertising boards for his carpet cleaning business.

According to police, it is thought that three armed men in a grey Toyota Tazz pulled up next to the victim.

Two of them alighted from their vehicle and spoke to the victim. It is believed that a gun battle between the victim and the suspects ensued.

Residents who heard the gunshots called paramedics who found the victim lying on the road with a gunshot wound to the pelvic area.

The body of the suspected hijacker lay near the victim’s vehicle.

The second suspect was found lying 10 metres down the road. He had to be restrained by police, who arrived shortly after the shooting.

ER24 spokesman and paramedic Derrick Banks, the first paramedic on scene, found the victim lying in a pool of blood on the road surrounded by pedestrians and frantic residents.

Banks said he immediately tried to stabilise the man while he waited for emergency services to arrive.

“The man sustained a gunshot wound to pelvic area and had lost a lot of blood,” he said.

He said that the man was fitted with an intravenous drip and stabilised before being taken to Entabeni Hospital.

Entabeni spokeswoman Leanne Nyiri said the victim died yesterday afternoon.

She would not release the man’s name out of respect for his family’s wishes.

“His wife is distraught and she needs time to grieve,” she said.

Netcare spokesman Jeff Wicks said the dead suspect sustained a single gunshot wound to the chest, while the second suspect sustained a shot to the back of his head.

“Paramedics were given a police escort to hospital, with officers closing intersections to traffic to allow the emergency service vehicles speedy transit,” he said.

Police spokeswoman Daniela Veldhuizen said that police found a 9 mm pistol near the victim’s vehicle.

The third suspect escaped in the Toyota Tazz. Police have yet to establish whether the car has been reported as a hijacked vehicle.

“We have launched a [police search] for the third suspect and hope to make arrests soon,” Veldhuizen said.

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