Another police assault case surfaces

2011-05-02 09:26

Pretoria police officers have been caught on CCTV cameras kicking and punching an unarmed man, Beeld reported today.

Theuns Potgieter (33), of Silverton had gone to a petrol station in Gezina around 9pm on April 21 to get two flat tyres repaired.

He had his firearm tucked into the back of his pants, but did not have his licence with him.

CCTV footage shows police officers arriving at the station and walking over to where Potgieter and his friend are talking to another man in the workshop area.

“Even before they asked me I took out my gun and put it on the car’s engine cover. The police told us to lie down. I raised my arms and lay down,” he was quoted as saying.

Another man, presumably a plain-clothes policeman, then walks up to Potgieter and kicks him in the stomach several times as officers in uniform look on. He then stomps on his head, punches him in the face and kicks him in the stomach again.

A uniformed officer then kicks Potgieter. While he is being handcuffed the first policeman kicks him again.

He was taken to the Pretoria Moot police station, accused of possession of an unlicensed firearm, pointing a firearm and resisting arrest.

Potgieter was taken to hospital after vomiting blood and passing blood in his urine. After he was discharged he appeared in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court where he was released on bail of R2 000.

While in custody it was confirmed that he was the lawful owner of the gun.

According to Potgieter, police refused to help him open an assault case against the officers.

Gauteng police spokesman Colonel Neville Malila told Beeld: “... such alleged conduct by police members cannot be tolerated.”

The matter was being viewed in a serious light and would be investigated, he said.

Potgieter’s beating was the third case of alleged police violence in two weeks.

Last week Jeanette Odendaal was shot dead, allegedly by a police sergeant, as she sat in her car outside the Kempton Park police station, after apparently having bumped into a police van while parking.

Andries Tatane was killed during a protest in Ficksburg. He was allegedly shot at point-blank range with rubber bullets and beaten with rubber truncheons. 

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