Shot in high-speed chase

2015-02-05 00:00

A DANGEROUS game of cat-and-mouse between street racers and police resulted in a city-wide chase that has left one man critically ­injured in hospital.

Gunshots echoed all across the city as the high-speed chase played out on Tuesday night when members of the K9 unit spotted cars in an illegal drag race on New Greytown Road outside Prilla Mills.

After failing to pull the drivers over, the car chase continued all the way to Northdale, back on the N3 towards Liberty Mall, back towards Eastwood and finally ended in the CBD.

Police officers followed close ­behind one driver, identified as ­Aavishkar Sadanan (25) of ­Allandale, firing a number of shots at the vehicle. One of the bullets hit Sadanan in the ­abdomen as his car eventually came to a halt in William Street.

It is alleged that the officers removed Sadanan from the vehicle and left him on the roadside for more than an hour before an ambulance arrived to take him to hospital.

The second driver was apprehended in the Mountain Rise area. In this case, it is alleged that officers beat the driver while he lay on the ground.

Sadanan’s friend Jody Reddy said he followed the police as they chased Sadanan.

Reddy said they were “hanging out” in Allandale when they decided to drive to Monty’s Garage in Mountain Rise.

When they got to New Greytown Road, the robots were red and the two Citi Golfs were alongside each other, so “they thought they would just have an unintentional race”.

After the race began, at around 9 pm, the police, who were ­stationed further up the road, gave chase.

“Through all that way they were shooting. Yes, Aavishkar may be seen as reckless, but were the police not even more of a danger by firing bullets in every direction throughout town?” Reddy asked.

In the aftermath, roughly 18 ­bullet holes were found on Sadanan’s Golf.

Sadanan, who has an IT diploma, remains in a stable condition at Grey’s Hospital after surgery yesterday to remove the bullet from his stomach. His family said they were too emotional to comment ­yesterday.

A passenger in the second vehicle in the drag race, who asked not to be named, said they put their hands up and lay on the ground after armed police approached their ­vehicle.

“They were fisting him [the driver] on the face while he lay on the floor,” he said.

The driver, Nadeem Kader, ­appeared in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court yesterday, bandaged and limping. Charged with reckless and negligent driving, he was let out on bail.

A witness, who asked not to be named, said he was exiting the McDonald’s on Chatterton Road with a milkshake in his hand when he saw the cars “fly by”.

“I just saw two police GTIs giving chase to this Golf and shooting like mad. I told myself to stop, drop and roll,” the witness said.

Another witness was on his way home after a late shift at work when Sadanan’s car stopped behind him at a robot.

“It was on Mysore Road and this Golf came up behind me at the ­robot, and I could see police lights coming up in the distance. The ­driver made a U-turn and sped off, and the police chased after him,” the witness said.

Police spokesperson Major Thulani Zwane said the state had opened a case of attempted murder against the police officers involved.

“No arrests have been made and we are investigating the matter ­internally to see if the police ­conduct was in line with the law or not,” Zwane said.

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) was approached for comment, but failed to respond before the print deadline.


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