Passer-by shot dead during robbery

2010-09-14 00:00

A PASSER-BY, Kenneth Mtshali (27), was shot dead and Lukman Patel (30) was wounded in the leg during an armed robbery in Church Street on Saturday evening.

A man who owns a block of flats in the same street had just collected rent from tenants at about 8.30 pm and was walking to his car with Patel and another man when three men ran up with firearms drawn and demanded money.

The other man, who declined to give his name, said the gunmen came from the corner of Church and Deane streets and fired in the air.

“We immediately took cover while the gunmen took money from the flat owner. We heard more gunshots while they were getting away,” said the witness.

When they got up he said he saw people gathered a few metres away and went to investigate, and saw that a man had been shot dead.

The flat owner also declined to be named and did not want to comment.

Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Joey Jeevan confirmed the robbery, injury and murder.

She said Mtshali was shot in the chest.

“After taking the money the suspects fired three shots and fled from scene. They ran into Deane Street and fired several more shots randomly, hitting Mtshali who was walking along the road.

“They got into an awaiting VW Golf … parked in Langalibalele Street.

Yesterday detective services and the Pietermaritzburg Project team arrested three suspects, aged 30, 31 and 34, in the CBD after tip-offs and viewing CCTV footage.

A black VW Golf was seized.

“The suspects are believed to be part of a syndicate operating in the Pietermaritzburg CBD. The management of the SAPF commends the members for the speedy arrests,” said Jeevan.

Anyone with information about the incident should contact Warrant Officer Rajeev Soorajbally at 033 845 2751 or 082 563 2172.

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