As it happened: Man kills himself after stand-off with Cape Town police

2015-05-13 10:42

The brother of the man who was involved in a stand-off with police in Athlone, Cape Town, was flown in earlier to help diffuse the situation, say police. But the man later shot himself in the head.


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Last Updated at 18:47
13 May 12:50

In summary: A man died on Wednesday in Athlone, Cape Town, after an overnight stand-off with police that started over a complaint about his 13 dogs. 

The man, Michael Volkwyn, 61, apparently had mental illness problems. His family members and negotiators were called to the scene but it was to no avail as Volkwyn shot himself in the head when police entered the property.

13 May 12:15
Curious neighbours look on at the scene. Photo by Tammy Petersen.

13 May 12:09

Hostage negotiators and task team were called to assist and the suspect's brother was flown in from Johannesburg to help diffuse the situation, the police's Captain FC van Wyk said.

When officers entered the property earlier on Wednesday morning, shots were heard inside the house. Volkwyn, 61, was found laying on the floor.

Police say he had shot himself and paramedics declared him dead at scene. An inquest docket was opened for investigation.

13 May 12:04
According to Volkwyn's sister, police refused to let the family say some last words to him before they stormed the house.

13 May 11:55
The man's identity has been confirmed by his sister, Diana. His name was Michael Volkwyn.

13 May 11:45
Police say the SPCA will be taking the man's 13 dogs in.

13 May 11:25

The man's sister told News24's Tammy Petersen that he killed himself and one of the dogs when police stormed the house.

The sister said on Tuesday night negotiators tried speaking to him. But she said she knew he wasn’t going to come out alive and was either going to kill himself or police would kill him. He was a member of the Cape Corps, the sister said.

13 May 11:15
BREAKING: The man at the centre of the situation has died, paramedics confirmed.

13 May 11:08

News24's Tammy Petersen says the suspect is a retired electrical engineer.

Petersen tweeted from the scene: 'You bastard! We just wanted to say goodbye!' a woman, believed to be a family member, screams at an officer. People murmur their agreement.

13 May 11:04

13 May 10:55

About half an hour ago, gunshots were also heard coming from the house.

- Are you at the scene? Send us your eyewitness accounts and pictures

13 May 10:53

13 May 10:50
About 25 minutes ago, police entered the property, reports Petersen. Paramedics have also entered the house.

13 May 10:49

The man at the centre of a hostage drama in which a police officer was shot in the face was described by neighbours as “eccentric” and “out there”.

The neighbours also claimed the man’s house was “booby trapped”, reported News24’s Tammy Petersen from the scene. But the police’s Captain FC van Wyk would not confirm this.

The man allegedly shot former cricketer Herschelle Gibbs's mother with a crossbow a few years ago.

13 May 10:47

A police officer was shot and injured in a suspected hostage drama in Athlone, Cape Town, on Tuesday night.

The situation started when a resident in Hazendal, Athlone, called in a complaint to law enforcement officials that her landlord’s dogs had attacked her, police spokesperson Captain Frederick van Wyk told News24.

The South African Police Service responded to the call at around 18:30 on Tuesday, and determined that the dogs should be removed.

On attempting to remove the dogs from the premises, shots were fired by the owner, who had barricaded himself in the house.

A 27-year-old police constable was shot in the face, and was taken to hospital, Van Wyk said.

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