Baby died while mom was looting – witnesses

2015-01-25 09:20
Looters in Soweto. (Mikzo, Twitter)

Looters in Soweto. (Mikzo, Twitter)

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Johannesburg - Police are investigating reports that the mother of the 13-month-old baby who died in a looting rampage on Friday was not an innocent bystander but a looter herself.

According to the Sunday Times, the mother, Zanele Majozi, said she had been on her way to a local clinic with her baby, Nqobile, when she was trampled by a mob who ran out of a shop they had looted. However, witnesses told the newspaper that they had seen Majozi running out the shop with eggs and cool drink.

One witness, Phindile Shabangu said when Majozi ran out the shop her baby, who was strapped to her back, was bleeding from his ears, nose and mouth. She said they later retrieved a blue-and –white blanket from inside the looted shop. Majozi’s slippers were also found in the road. Both items were handed to police.

Initial reports stated that the baby was killed in Kagiso on the West Rand when it was trampled by a mob of stampeding looters, as reported by News24.

Fleeing mob

"A 13-month-old baby died during a looter's raid stampede at Kagiso yesterday [Friday] afternoon," said Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale.

Looters who were robbing a spaza shop allegedly scattered when police arrived, he said.

The mob ran into a young mother who was carrying the baby.

"In that commotion the baby fell and was trampled by the fleeing mob."

The baby was certified dead on the scene by paramedics.

A case of murder had been opened.

Twenty-four people were arrested in Kagiso on Friday night following violence and looting of foreign owned shops.

Shot in the chest

Looting of foreign-owned shops in Soweto began on Monday when a Somali man allegedly shot dead a 14-year-old boy accused of being part of a group trying to break into his store.

Gauteng police commissioner Lieutenant General Lesetja Mothiba said the looting had since spread to Diepsloot, north of Johannesburg, and Kagiso.

Sibiya said a 61-year-old bystander died when a foreigner fired at a crowd stoning his shop in Swaneville on Thursday night.

The man was shot in the chest and died on arrival at hospital. No arrests had been made and a murder case had been opened.

Also on Thursday, in Tshepisong, a man was wounded while allegedly trying to break into a spaza shop belonging to a foreigner.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  crime  |  soweto unrest
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