Guard sits outside as robbers ransack house

2014-10-02 13:07
Mahendra Chetty outside his home. (Nash Narrandes, The Witness)

Mahendra Chetty outside his home. (Nash Narrandes, The Witness)

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Chelsea Pieterse, The Witness

Pietermaritzburg - A terrified Pietermaritzburg man hid in his bedroom as three heavily armed men stormed into his Scottsville home, while his security company sat outside, allegedly doing nothing.

The robbers had arrived in a white Audi A4, suspected to be the same one used in three break-ins carried out in nearby Hayfields at the weekend.

Seconds after three men set off the perimeter alarm at Mahendra Chetty’s home, Chetty received a phone call from Chubb Security as he hid in a locked bedroom with his gun in hand, asking if he needed assistance.

Trembling

“I said I was in the house with the assailants [and asked them to] please come immediately,” he said.

Chetty said he heard the men enter the house, destroying a security gate and two doors effortlessly upon entering the yard.

“They were talking very loudly, and I could hear them breaking things in the house,” he said.

The burglary was over in a matter of seconds as the driver of the getaway car hooted and the men fled the scene.

Chetty said as he sat trembling in his bedroom he feared for his life, not knowing whether to shoot through his bedroom door at the assailants or not.

Neighbourhood watch members arrived at Chetty’s house to find a Chubb security car parked a few metres down the road with the lights off.

“I asked him [the Chubb security guard] where the owner of the house was and he said he didn’t know. I then phoned Mahendra and when he answered I told him it was safe to leave the house,” said a senior member of the Scottsville Extension Neighbourhood Watch, who asked not to be named.

Alarm siren ripped out

When Chetty came out of the bedroom, he said he saw the alarm siren lying on the floor - next to a bar stool.

“The man had climbed onto the bar stool, opened the trapdoor in the ceiling and pulled out the alarm siren. How did he know it was there? It is very suspicious,” he said.

Chetty said the men made off with the CCTV system’s memory board and R60 000 worth of items, including two laptops, a PlayStation and clothing.

Belinda Leverington, Chetty’s neighbour, said she watched as the men fled the house and sped away in the Audi.

“The driver was not wearing a mask or anything to hide his face. I didn’t see the three men running out of the house properly as they were moving too fast, but they were all of large build. I could not see the Chubb security vehicle from my house,” she said.

Guard afraid

When asked why he had not acted, the Chubb security guard allegedly said he was afraid and that there were laws that prevented him from entering a property to assist those in need.

“What was Mahendra paying for if Chubb did not act?” asked the neighbourhood watch source.

He said the security guard was equipped with a 9 mm pistol, a bulletproof vest and tear gas.

An angry Chetty said the guard had waited for the police to arrive before entering his house.

He said he had already changed his security company and was pleased that the new firm had stationed a security guard outside his home overnight at no charge.

Chubb said they were still gathering information and would investigate the incident.

Police said a case of housebreaking and theft had been opened and no arrests had been made.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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