Cop axed after video clip shows him beating up boy

2012-03-14 00:00

A CASE of police brutality is being investigated after cellphone footage that appeared on the Internet this week showed a police officer from Vaalwater, Limpopo, assaulting a minor.

Warrant Officer Petrus Lefoka (45) appeared briefly in the Modimolle Regional Court yesterday on a charge of assault with the intention to do grievous bodily harm.

He was released with a warning and will return to court in May.

The Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD) is investigating a case of brutality against him.

Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, head of police communications in Limpopo, said the cellphone video was shocking. He said yesterday that Lefoka had been suspended. Disciplinary steps were being taken against him and he would face a disciplinary hearing on March 24.

He will appear again in the Modimolle regional court on May 9.

The video shows Lefoka striking and kicking a 16-year-old boy on November 24 last year.

A eyewitness recorded the incident on a cellphone and the footage was placed on 2oceansVibe this week.

Lefoka was in his police uniform and was acting police chief in Vaalwater on the day in question.

His station commander was on leave. He was called to the scene by a tavern owner who reported that the allegedly drunk minor was spilling his drink over patrons.

Mulaudzi said it was believed that the boy was also breaking windows at the tavern. He was arrested for disturbing the peace.

The video shows Lefoka kicking and beating the boy, who is lying on the ground next to a building. Then he drags him by the shirt to a police vehicle. Lefoka is shown battling to get the drunken boy into the vehicle.

The boy falls to the ground again and Lefoka clouts him in the face. He kicks him in the head and on his back. Then he grabs him by the trousers and hoists him into the vehicle with the help of another man.

There is blood on the ground where the boy was assaulted.

Lefoka took the boy to hospital.

He later brought a case against ­Lefoka.

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