Murder on the dance floor

2011-03-29 00:00

POLICE are appealing for help in the death of a young cricketer who was stabbed at a popular nightclub in Pietermaritzburg at the weekend, as the incident has become the talk of the town.

Social network site Facebook was yesterday inundated with comments about the death of Juran “Lorenzo” Raman (21).

Raman suffered fatal stab wounds to the neck, believed to have been caused by a broken drinking glass, while he was dancing at Cafe Vacca Matta nightclub at the Golden Horse Casino at about 4.30 am.

He died at St Anne’s Hospital at about 7 am on Sunday.

Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Joey Jeevan told The Witness on Sunday that Raman was pushed and fell on the broken glass.But yesterday Jeevan said it appears that Raman was stabbed twice in the neck while he was dancing.

“It is alleged that he was confronted by two known males and an altercation occurred. During the altercation Raman sustained two stab wounds to the neck and was seriously wounded and fell to the ground.”

Jeevan said no witnesses have come forward.

Raman’s friend, who asked not to be named and was at the club during the incident, never mentioned the fight to The Witness. He said that Raman had been dancing with an unknown woman just before he saw him being carried to the back of the club.

Vacca Matta spokesperson Lisa Sukdev said on Sunday that Raman “was stabbed accidentally”, but she could not explain how the incident happened. She said the nightclub staff caught a suspect and handed him to the police, who did not make an arrest or take a statement.

“Warrant Officer Swami Pillay will be here at noon tomorrow to view the CCTV footage. After that anyone will be able to see the footage,” said Sukdev.

Jeevan said the suspect is known, but she said police have not made an arrest. She said that she is aware of allegations that police have declined to arrest the suspect.

A member of Raman’s family, who refused to be named, said the families believe Raman was murdered.

“They said that the suspect is a member of a gang from Mountain Rise who frequents Cafe Vacca Matta.

“The family asked to view the CCTV at the Vacca Matta nightclub, but they refused to let us do so,” the relative.

Commenting on Facebook, Jared Reddy said, “There is definitely something being covered up. The boy was ‘stabbed accidentally’ and ‘someone was detained’ ‘… he fell on broken glass’. I don’t know whether it’s possible to fall on glass and die. Sounds like the floor is the culprit. Someone stabbed this boy, who’s someone else’s son and brother. Justice Please.”

Jeevan has appealed for witnesses to call Detective Warrant Officer Swami Pillay at 082 556 1380.

If you were at Vacca Matta when the incident occurred and saw what happened, e-mail newsed@witness.co.za.

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