Road rage policeman ‘slapped me in the face’, says salesman

2009-11-26 00:00

AN employee in the sales division of The Witness was in shock yesterday hours after a policeman allegedly slapped him in the face in the city centre.

Mluleki Phungula was driving to meet a client yesterday morning when the incident occurred.

On Pietermaritz Street, a Toyota Quantum minibus driven by a policeman on the right side of Phungula’s car suddenly attempted to get into the lane in front of him.

“They did not indicate their intention as drivers are supposed to do. I kept on driving until I reached a robot, which turned red, forcing me to stop … the minibus the police were driving was right behind me and two of the front seat occupants had alighted and immediately were on both sides of my car,” said Phungula.

Seeing that the men had police uniforms on, he said he opened the door for the one on his side as his side window is not functioning.

“He poked my right eye with his finger and slapped me hard on the face. He said [the way I was driving was] nonsense.

“Even if I was in the wrong, I never expected to be assaulted by police officers.

“They were in the wrong and yet I had to be assaulted like that,” he said.

He then went to the Central police station to open an assault charge, but had to leave the station before the process could be completed because of work commitments.

He went back to the police station later and a case of assault was opened.

The minibus has been confirmed as belonging to the Central station’s police crime prevention unit.

Phungula’s supervisor, Cheryl Morgan, said she is appalled at what the police did, stating that he is not an aggressive person.

“What they have done is horrendous. I hope it doesn’t just fade away with nothing done about it. I cannot imagine any person wanting to assault Phungula because he’s such a nice and quiet person. The police should be protecting, not intimidating and assaulting, innocent people,” Morgan said.

Police spokeswoman Inspector Joey Jeevan said they are aware of the incident and a departmental investigation is under way.

She said the SA Police Service expects its members to be professional at all times. Should the investigation confirm the allegations, departmental action will be taken, Jeevan added. She did not indicate whether the driver of the minibus has been identified.

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