Cops urged to take care with statements
Pretoria - Members of the police service will face disciplinary action if they failed to write accurate statements, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa warned on Monday.
According to his office, he said in reply to a Parliamentary question: "Such mistakes can make or break a case. We shall therefore not gamble with the lives of citizens."
The minister said all officers who had their statements rejected by the courts, would be placed under a mentor for training.
Officers would be trained in all elements of crime, from the description of witnesses, to suspects, crime scenes and obtaining complete information of the complainant.
Mthethwa said the way police officers took down statements had a huge impact on criminal convictions. That was why skills in this regard were vital.
The minister had been asked what he had done to ensure that statements by police officers would be able to withstand the scrutiny of court procedures.