Cop arrested after bystander shot dead

2012-03-28 10:22

Johannesburg - A police constable was arrested on Tuesday afternoon after he shot someone near a train station in Cleveland, Gauteng police said.

"It is alleged that the police constable and his crew were busy searching three suspect VW Polo motor vehicles next to Cleveland train station," said Lieutenant Colonel Tshisikhawe Ndou.

"Allegedly during the search the police constable’s R5 rifle went off and fatally shot a bystander."

The Independent Complaints Directorate (ICD) was called to the scene and a murder case was opened.

"The circumstances around the incident will be investigated and the docket has been handed over to the ICD for further investigation," Ndou said.

The constable was arrested and charged with murder. He will appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

- Were you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts.

  • Mike - 2012-03-28 10:24

    Gross negligence and stupidity FFS .

      Eugene Walters - 2012-03-28 10:32

      lac of sufficient training

      Jason - 2012-03-28 10:54

      Exactly, total lack of training and tactical awareness. There is no such thing a an accidental discharge unless you have a mechanical malfunction. In all other cases its a negligent discharge! IMHO!

      Eric - 2012-03-28 11:12

      Keystone Cops!!!!!!!!!

      Den - 2012-03-28 12:07

      your surmanes my first name, first ive ever come across

  • Sharon - 2012-03-28 10:32

    What could his defence be? Uhh my finger suddenly spasmed? or geez, all of a sudden my finger really started to itch and the trigger seemed a good place to scratch it? Condolences to the victim's family...

      schencpa - 2012-03-28 11:19

      Your finger is never on the trigger except if you intend to pull it and shoot. Basic gun safety training. And why was the safety not on?

      Philip - 2012-03-28 12:18

      His rifle should be on safe: Safe without a round chambered!!! especially for a roadblock. only time his rifle should have a round chambered at a roadblock is when he given the duty of being a stopper group, then safety on, or if there is an immediate or possibly greater threat!!! He should not searching with a loaded unsafe rifle and definitely be aware of what he is doing!!! Bad training!!!

  • E=MC2 - 2012-03-28 10:36

    OMW! An R5 going off accidentally??

  • Coen - 2012-03-28 10:36

    Incompetence de-luxe. No surprise really.

  • njdejager - 2012-03-28 10:37

    Nothing will happen to him....He is now going to claim after the incident he is traumatized and will be sent for counselling.....THE END. Sad state of affairs in SA.

      Pieter - 2012-03-28 11:18

      very pessimistic are we? have you accidentily shot someone before and nothing happened to you? no place for doom prophets in SA

  • Jabu - 2012-03-28 10:40

    Here we go again, last time it was trainee Mbatha. Now this. Aaiii

      Ronald - 2012-03-28 12:08

      Next we will hear that he has been promoted to a colonel and transferred to the presidential protection unit. Sorry, just feeling ticked off at the pathetic general state of training in the police and the warped promotion system after having served there for 12 years myself, the last 6 doing the job of and officer as a sergeant because I was qualified, but there was no place for promotion on the Persal system. Now the system has changed, a colonel cannot do the job of a sergeant because he is not qualified to do it. Needless to say I resigned.

  • richard.hipkin - 2012-03-28 10:43

    Eish... Feel sorry for both parties.

  • rowan.maulson - 2012-03-28 10:59

    WTF was he doing with a loaded assault rifle on his person whilst searching vehicles? 1 or 2 cops should have been searching the vehicles and 1 or 2 cops should have had the loaded weapons outside the vehicles....

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-28 13:25

      Mmmm, never been a cop have you?

      GrootWitHaai - 2012-03-28 14:50

      PointBlank is the all seeing all knowing Obionekenobi....or knobhead for short.

  • Andre - 2012-03-28 11:00

    ...shocking how the police are forcing civilians to undergo competency tests and training to go through a strict selection process to own a gun licence! Question - was this police officer trained and certified competent to receive a fire arm? If so, why was the safety pin of the fire arm not activated? Was his life in danger? If not, why was the fire arm loaded? I hope they lock him up - how would this cop reacted if someone accidently shot one of his family? Would he accept an excuse that the gun went of by accident?

  • Garry - 2012-03-28 11:20

    Banana Republic

      Oom - 2012-03-28 12:07

      Woodwork experts

  • Den - 2012-03-28 11:28

    seems like the cops are usless from head to toe, what kind of morons are they recruiting? oh wait bee morons, explains alot..come on trolls, heres some troll bait..

  • Dushan - 2012-03-28 11:28

    Idiot...Kharma caught up with him...

  • Gregory - 2012-03-28 11:31

    A R5 assault rifle as a 600 - 750 rounds a minute firing capacity on automatic . Do we really need these in the hands of incompetent people on our streets .

  • Gogs Lombard - 2012-03-28 11:36

    Training. His superior officers must be held accountable for this tragic occurrence. What was he doing with a loaded rifle while searching a car? Basic training demands that you DO NOT place any round in the firing chamber of any firearm until you have identified that which you wish to shoot and intend to fire the gun. - 2012-03-28 11:56

      Correct. In fact a) No round should be in the chamber anyway b) the safety should be on c) The finger should not be near the trigger And I believe that the man searching should not have a rifle. He could not use the rifle while searching a car anyway. Sad, bad training and bad work by the offcer running the roadblock. Checks are meant to be done before the operation and at the end. Any chambered round would have been detected in such a check.

  • customdesign - 2012-03-28 11:56

    Poor dude

  • Rob - 2012-03-28 12:03

    I am struggling to understand this report! It says that the rifle 'went off'. What does that mean, did it go off on its own, so it was an act of God? Or was it discharged unintentionally (note that I avoid saying accidentally) by the policeman. I guess that we will have to wait for the outcome of the investigation (maybe) to find out what happened, but to describe it as though the gun 'went off' on its own certainly does no good for any concept of accountability. Surely News 24 can do better than this?

      Rob - 2012-03-28 13:03

      Emmanuel: Think carefully...sure you are speculating but if the cop was trying to scare then his actions were intentional. He may not have wanted the outcome, but he was doing something that resulted in the gun discharging, therefore he caused the gun to discharge, therefore it was intentional! It is called taking responsibility for the effect of your actions.

      Rob - 2012-03-28 13:14

      And Emmanuel: Your example of the car is also a perfect illustration. Clearly the car did nothing of the sort. Either the driver drove the vehicle over the man, or by default left the car in such a state that it was not prevented frpom rolling over the man. Again the intent may not have been to harm the man, but that does not change the action or negligence of the driver. Avoidance of accountability for actions and effects is common, but that does not make it less of a problem!

      Cindy - 2012-03-28 13:39

      Emmanuel do you live in gaggaland????? I'd rather News24 reported that the rifle "went off" than this unintentional rubbish! The bloody thing should have been on "safety". There was no "unintentional" only a NEGLIGENT

  • Den - 2012-03-28 12:11

    i just love the thumbs down brigade, dear trolls you experience these bad cops probably more than some, arnt you tired of this bad service? why thumbs down?, cos you presume we white?? wake up and smell the rotting reality..

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-28 13:27

      Salt and vinegar?

  • Johann - 2012-03-28 12:12

    Bad training ,no drills the weapon should have on safe and no round in the chamber ,failing to do this is criminal .There is no more discipline and respect for superiors . Then you get incedents like these . Also when you promote members from sergeant to colonel its not a police service any more but a farce

  • veritas.odium.paret - 2012-03-28 12:23

    And remember that just over 27 000 other cops were found to be as proficient with firearms as this guy!

  • Remona - 2012-03-28 12:24


  • Mike - 2012-03-28 12:47

    news24 obviously not open to critisism, deleting my comment

      Xzaviera - 2012-03-28 13:50

      What did you say Mike... they delete my comments all the time :)

  • Philip - 2012-03-28 13:13

    Eish, what is this safety switch you talk about?

  • Chien-Teng - 2012-03-28 13:24

    5 BASIC Firearm Safety Rules: ----------------------------- Rule #1. Treat all weapons as if they are loaded. Rule #2. Never point at anything you are not willing to destroy. Rule #3. Always keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire. Rule #4. Keep your weapon on safe until your sights are on target. Rule #5. Always know what is in front of your target and what is behind it. It is basically lack of training, lack of discipline and lack of enforcement of the basic rules. Now not only he has a dead innocent bystander on his conscience but his family will suffer from being singled out (for his action) and one less income earner for his family.

  • Jackie - 2012-03-28 13:27


  • evdwesthuizen1 - 2012-03-28 14:11

    also a 40 something trainee constable? Probably a MK war vet....

  • Rob - 2012-03-28 14:29

    Has South Africa been bought by Disneyland to be marketed as a theme park illustrating how to screw up the world. No matter how bad you think Europe has become it sure is a relief to get safely off the plane at Charles De Gaul, Heathrow or wherever. Maybe it can work in reverse and increase SA's tourism.

  • Ian - 2012-03-29 01:32

    Sorry to say, but i feel for this guy. If his R5/4 went off, and he killed someone because he was badly trained, i feel for him. If he pointed it at someone and then it went off, sorry for him. More people get killed by mistake with a gun, than on purpose. My thoughts and prayers are with all the innocent, dumb and badly trained. Even those with remorse and vengeance. Like you all, I just want to see a better SA.

  • chabie.mohlala - 2012-08-30 14:13

    i agree with u eugene

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