Police lose their guns in the loo

2012-12-11 00:00

CAPE TOWN — No fewer than six police officers lost their firearms in toilets over the past financial year.

A report from the Police Department distributed to MPs lists 740 weapons lost in the 2011/12 year. It says 352 were lost through negligence and 388 for “bone fide” reasons.

Negligence is divided into eight categories: lost under the influence of alcohol — 1; lost in bathrooms/toilets — 6; theft out of an official vehicle — 16; lost from the person — 22; theft out of private vehicles — 29 and negligent loss — 246.

The “bone fide” category includes weapons lost/stolen in the course of official duties — 26; housebreaking — 99 and robbery — 253.

The documents said disciplinary steps were taken against 350 officers in the 2011/12 year.

The DA’s police spokesperson Dianne Kohler Barnard said she would ask Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa for more details of the disciplinary proceedings.

“The SAPS cannot go on losing their firearms and not recovering them, while allowing officers to go unpunished,” she said.

Repeated attempts to get comment from the SAPS were not successful.

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