Neighbour saves artist

2012-11-17 00:00

QUICK thinking from a concerned neighbour saved a 65-year-old pensioner from robbers at her home in Ferncliffe, Pietermaritzburg yesterday.

Kathy Pienaar, a children’s book illustrator, was confronted by two young men in her yard, who tied her up with a torn sheet from her washing line.

“They pulled up my shirt over my face so I would not be able to identify them,” she said.

Pienaar said she was terrified. “It was like an out of body experience,” she said, adding the men were violent when pulling her into the house. They told her not to scream as they were not going to hurt her because they only wanted money.

“I told them I was all alone because I was afraid that if I had told them someone was in the house, they might drag me into the bushes and who knows what would have happened to me,” she said.

She screamed loudly for help. “My neighbour heard and I think she called my name. When I didn’t respond, she pressed the panic button to set off the alarm.”

Shortly after that the robbers ran off with her wedding ring and cellphone.

Pienaar was thrilled when the ring was found close by and handed back to her, as it has been part of her life since her wedding day in 1974.

“Thank God for my neighbour’s help. I don’t know what I would have done without her.”

Her neighbour said her daughter, domestic worker and gardener had all assisted.

Police said four men aged 20 to 35 were arrested in connection with the incident.

• thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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