Woman: Police beat me up

2008-03-02 00:00

AN Eastwood mother claims she was severely assaulted this weekend — allegedly by Mountain Rise police officers in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Alvina Wiltwer (48) said she was pushed and kicked by an abusive police officer in full view of her sons and on-duty police officers. A gun was also allegedly pulled and pepper spray used against her sons when they attempted to come to the rescue of their mother.

Wiltwer told The Witness that the assault started when the police refused to open an assault case for her son because he “smelled of alcohol”. A commotion ensued thereafter, resulting in Wiltwer being attacked.

When she went to Mountain Rise Police Station, Wiltwer was accompanying her son Donovan to open an assault case after he was hit with a bottle above his left eye during a fight earlier in the evening.

According to Wiltwer, the police told Donovan that they were not going to open a case for him as he still smelt of alcohol, and they assumed that he was still drunk.

“I tried to explain that he was not drunk and had just been to hospital, where he slept the alcohol off. That is when they started swearing at me and calling me names,” she said.

Wiltwer said that she and her son then decided to leave because they were not receiving any help.

“As I was by the door, one of the cops asked me why I was leaving while they were still explaining the rules of the police station to me. I then went back to the counter and that is when I got beaten up,” she said.

Wiltwer said that as she stood by the counter, a policeman jumped over it, tripped her and then pushed her against the wall before kicking her repeatedly on her right leg and thigh.

“I did not understand why I was being beaten up, and the worst part is that the other policemen, including the captain on duty, just stood and watched as I lay on the floor in pain,” she said.

Wiltwer said that her other three sons, who had been waiting in the car outside, heard her scream and ran inside the station. When they asked the police why their mother was being beaten, they were sprayed with pepper spray before a gun was pulled on one of them while their mother was still being kicked.

“They also attempted to arrest me before letting me go. When we left the station, we went to Loop Street Police Station to open a case, but there they said that I will only get a case number from Mountain Rise Police Station when they have sent my docket there,” she said.

Wiltwer is questioning whether her case will ever be opened if her docket is being sent to the place where she was assaulted.

Police spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram confirmed the incident, but said that Wiltwer’s son Donovan had arrived at the police station drunk and had been told to return when sober.

Budhram said Donovan then became violent and challenged the officers on duty, leaving the police officers no choice, but to use force against him.

Budhram nevertheless said that the South African Police Services will under no circumstances condone any misconduct among its members.

“Should the investigation reveal any such misconduct on this particular issue, stringent disciplinary action will be instituted against those implicated,” he said.

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