Durban hostage-taker shot dead - reports

2012-04-27 12:34

Cape Town – The man who allegedly took two women hostage at the Westville Hospital in Durban has been shot dead, reported on Friday.

Details surrounding the situation are still unclear, but negotiations to free the hostages had been underway with the man until reports of his death.

Earlier on Friday Colonel Jay Naicker told Sapa that the suspect had initially "demanded to see a doctor or nurse and became impatient and began firing shots randomly".

Hospital staff, patients, and visitors panicked and ran in different directions for cover.

Three people sustained minor injuries, apparently from bullet shrapnel flying off the concrete walls and floor, said Naicker.

Two women, employed in the hospital's kitchen, were taken hostage by the man and had been held on the first floor. The National Intervention Unit and the Special Task Force were also on scene as backup should negotiations fail, he said.


The 30-year-old man had allegedly hijacked a taxi in Mariannhill earlier and forced the driver to take him to the hospital.

Hospital spokesperson Leanne Nyiri said it would release a statement shortly.

A Sapa reporter on scene said police snipers had positioned themselves at points surrounding the kitchen.

Portions of the hospital had been evacuated and food was brought in for the remaining patients.

The hostage taker was believed to be a former patient.

Three gunshots

A witness, who is a patient at the hospital, told Sapa he was lying in bed when the commotion began.

Mark House said he heard three gunshots and moments later, a woman stormed into his ward and tried to hide behind him.

"She was apologising to me, because she chose my room, because she feared this guy was looking for her," he said.

A short while later police evacuated them.

- Are you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos.

  • Sechaba - 2012-04-27 12:41

    Why shoot him, there is more to this but the evidene has been remoed

      spartanx93 - 2012-04-27 12:49

      @Sechaba - a good criminal is a dead criminal!

      Verne - 2012-04-27 12:51

      why shoot him?? im sorry but WHY did he fire shots in a hospital and risk innocent peoples lives?? he could of killed someone Thats WHY no one knew what he was going to do next thats WHY! what if he had killed or injured a child?

      eradingoana - 2012-04-27 13:05

      They were afraid to face him in the witness box as they could not answer any of his questions. Now they cannot argue with the dead man. - 2012-04-27 13:52

      why shoot him? what were they supposed to do? let him kill the hostages and then kill himself after that? you can't be serious, mate. sorry, but your comment is absurd.

      Sean - 2012-04-27 14:22

      @eradingoana- What a idiotic and brainless comment !!

      Michael - 2012-04-27 14:40

      Sechada: I'm interested, you seem to know quite a bit of what went down there, you must have witnessed it first hand, and..... why would 'they' remoed the evidene, it sounds painful.

      Jason - 2012-04-28 09:39

      Whats scary is these comments by these guys are more frightening than the hostage goes a long way to explaining many issues in this country!!!

  • En - 2012-04-27 12:43

    To all South Africans who think ALL our police are useless, please google the "Special Task Force". We have one of the most elite police units in the world, just a pity there are probably less than 100 of them in the whole country. They deal specifically with hostage situations, cash in transit robbers, etc etc. Well done on taking him out, once he started shooting people it was inevitable.

      cosmos.ndebele - 2012-04-27 13:23

      I said the same earlier and i was thumbed down!!! Pity this blog is full of trolls

      David - 2012-04-27 14:09

      Our police force is hopelessly inadequate and corrupt. However, there are many police officers within the system with integrity who don't receive the recognision they deserve

  • Olebogeng - 2012-04-27 12:45

    Shoot to kill is ONLY what our police knows.

      Lee - 2012-04-27 12:51

      It's all the bad guys with gun's know aswell.

      Bill - 2012-04-27 13:14

      And the criminals - ask Louis Vorster - oh sorry, you cannot ask him, they shot him dead while he was unarmed and sitting in his motor car. More power to the police! - 2012-04-27 13:54

      i don't see a problem with that. crime has gotten out of hand.

      Stavious - 2012-04-27 14:30

      in terms section 49 if some1's life is in imminent danger you shoot to kill....

      idevilliers1 - 2012-04-28 01:02

      So its ok for this fool to to be holding innocent people at gun point. I bet you if that he had killed the two of three woman, you would have said the saps had not done enough or they useless. The men should be commended for there work, for no innocent people were harmed, with there fast and sufficient work. What would you have said if it was your mother or sister being held at gun point....

      Shayne - 2012-04-28 10:37

      You must remember there's also the charge of hijacking a vehicle to the hospital & then there was the shots & hostage drama at the hospital. This ou committed 3 schedule offences in one day! Imagine if the police just let everyone get away with this. This country would be like Beirut!

  • Vandross - 2012-04-27 12:47

    Yeaaaahhh!!! atleast the bustard was shot dead.

      Gavin - 2012-04-28 13:17

      Yeah at least the Morons who think they can say and do whatever they like also got shot, people think they can say anything they want to anyone, sometimes I wish I could just do what that guy did, not a day goes by that I do not want to shoot idiots for disagreeing with me and saying no and the other crap that come out of their mouths because they think they are invincible. Well Done maybe people will think twice about saing something to someone, you never know who will crack and what they will do!!

  • Daniel - 2012-04-27 12:48

    Shoot the bastard, Otherwise they'll just be back on the street in 3 weeks, out on bail or insanity! And then they just start all over again! Killing innocent people!!!

  • spartanx93 - 2012-04-27 12:48

    Good! Saving the tax payer from wasteed expenditure!!

  • Calvin Oosthuysen - 2012-04-27 12:50

    Good.. well done for shooting this criminal dead. it has become to easy for these guys to pull out guns in our county, shoot to kill, and let that be a warning to the ones who think its okay to pull out a firearm and terrorise the hard working public.

  • colleen.ace - 2012-04-27 12:50

    Glad it appears to be over & perpetrator shot dead!

  • Lee - 2012-04-27 12:50

    Shame I agree because with him hijacking a taxi demanding them to take him to hospital then demanding to see a doctor or nurse tells me he knew he was in desporate need of help and unfortunately it was too late. It is tragic how it ended for him. It's a pitty they don't have darts or something like they have for animals with situations like this. He probably ran out of medication and didn't have any more money to get more or something otherwise why else hijack a taxi.

      acsteyn - 2012-04-27 12:54

      Lee I think you are being over sympathetic. But you sound like a compassionate person. Your views may have been different if he killed a few innocent people.

      spartanx93 - 2012-04-27 12:58

      He should get in line like everybody else! We can't all deeeeemand, else there would be total chaos.

  • acsteyn - 2012-04-27 12:52

    It's official hospital food kills.

      alansmartSnr - 2012-04-27 22:39

      Me thinks it's this e-toll thing that drove him koe koes, dilly - it almost did that to me! Now I just put my thumbs in my ear and wiggle my fingers at everybody.

  • Lee - 2012-04-27 12:53

    Shame people the guy was mentally ill in this case

      Sharon - 2012-04-27 13:23

      I agree with you, Lee - None of the reports state how long he had been waiting or how long since he had had any medication. I feel really sorry for the guy, if he had been seen to, this could have been prevented. Bipolar disorder is a condition in which people go back and forth between periods of a very good or irritable mood and depression. The "mood swings" between mania and depression can be very quick. Imagine living with that...

      freda.coetzee - 2012-04-27 13:34

      No Lee anyone shooting in a school or a hospital IS mentally ill...good excuse for crime I am sorry. You kill you die!!!

  • Mluleki Simelane - 2012-04-27 12:56

    Why shoot him? If he was holding you hostage you'd be glad he's dead

  • thulanit3 - 2012-04-27 12:59

    Hospitals no longer safe,,,we need to walk around with bullet proofs as its clear, people walk in and out with dangerous weapons,,,!

      Colin - 2012-04-27 13:17

      the last time I visited a hospital in the north of England the elderly doorman was wearing a bulletproof vest. When I asked my brother why, he told me that several doormen had been killed or injured by asian gang members who go to the trauma room to finish off rival gang membersafter the injured were brought to the hospital. There are also notices stating that people found guilty of assaulting hospital staff would be prosecuted. So don't think S.A. Is alone, even so called civilised places sufer from crazies also.

      Harold - 2012-04-27 19:45

      @Colin you are so right we also have a lot of asian gangsters in South Africa. Ask the drug mules Ask the Rhinos Ask the Perlemoen .

  • Shirley - 2012-04-27 13:11

    He had ample time to surrender!He endangerd innocent lives and when he fired those shots he signed his own death warrent! You live or die by the choices you make. Well done to all concerned.It could have been a lot worse if this action was not taken!

  • maama - 2012-04-27 13:13

    thats being an incompetent police to shoot such aguy u were supposed to play him with all your knowledge until u get him down.look at americans they dont kill u until they get all the info out of u.reckless police officers paid for nothing.sorry to the hurt patients and doctors.

      adrian.marais - 2012-04-27 13:23

      Okay so next time we'll call you to talk to the mad f#ck

      Shirley - 2012-04-27 13:27

      You watch too much tv! This is the REAL world!!!!!!I bet if your loved one was being held in that hospital with a gun against their head you might just sing another song!

      Shaun - 2012-04-27 13:27

      Stop watching movies and wake up! Good job SAPS!

      Shaun - 2012-04-27 13:28

      Stop watching movies and wake up! Good job SAPS!

      Jandl Reevo Reeves - 2012-04-27 13:29

      Watching to many movies ...

      spartanx93 - 2012-04-27 13:56

      Too much CSI!

      carpejugulim - 2012-04-27 14:08

      maama I'd pay to see you talk a hostage taker down and "play him with all your knowledge" ... the first bits of lead that go flying around your ears you will hike up your petticoats and run

      Shayne - 2012-04-28 10:41

      They should've called you in. You seem to know how to "talk" a mentally deranged person down.

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-04-27 13:17

    Shame i feel for everyone involved but if was mentally ill he should have been in a mental institution.

  • Chabi - 2012-04-27 13:36

    e.tolling & inaccessible Health Care can frustrate a man to these lenthgs... Go well mate, hope you are already receiving proper service delivery where you at...

      Jason - 2012-04-27 13:47

      Apparently he was complaining that his family in gauteng was going to get raped everyday using the highways in Gauteng.

  • Luke - 2012-04-27 13:43

    You people are a bunch a whingers! If he had not been shot you would be complaining that "not enough was done to save lives"! You negative good for nothings. Get over it and accept that something was done right in this country!

  • maseratifittipaldi - 2012-04-27 13:55

    Another victim of our useless health services. Proudly South African. When will we learn that good health is not a commodity that can be transacted in a marketplace or withheld from the poor.

      scnzama - 2012-04-27 14:44

      you stupid fool

  • simon.sindane - 2012-04-27 14:00

    Wit stories da appears esp. on tis site,u would swear dat u watching an american movie,wats happenin wit SA

  • - 2012-04-27 14:01

    yes, he was in need of medical attention. we can try justify it, but what he did was just too drastic. you can't go around threatening people with guns in order to get what you want. if that became a norm there would be chaos. we all have to wait. whether you have a brain tumor or it's just flu. you have to be patient. unfortunately that is the situation. threatening to take someone's life is just not on. no matter how incompetent the hospital staff may be. keep your cool or cause a scene...but no guns. you'll hurt people, and yourself too. may his soul rest in peace.

  • watsongeorgejan - 2012-04-27 14:08

    The guy had a death wish, initially he hijacked a a taxi and then kept someone hostage. (According to EWN only one person was taken hostage)

  • Stavious - 2012-04-27 14:12

    According to some of u here the police were suposed to wait for him to kill the two women then arrest him,

  • Stavious - 2012-04-27 14:13

    According to some of u here the police were suposed to wait for him to kill the two women then arrest him,

  • plklopper - 2012-04-27 14:15

    The thing is he hi jakced a taxi, when he was not seen to fast enough according to his feelings he shoots and holds hostage, if he was so ill why did he have a gun, was it stolen or did he have a license. We will never know. We must stop blaming every thing on every one else. If u do a crime u must pay the he did not want to hand himself over so the police had no option as he was using deadly force, they have the horrible job of protecting the people like us that are not always thankful for it, so well done SAP

      Shirley - 2012-04-27 14:19

      Agree 100%. Unfortunatley there are always those who will find fault just tobe dumb and difficult!

  • Mark - 2012-04-27 14:28

    Well done Taakies! STF is the best police tactical unit in the world!

  • olerilwe.mosiane - 2012-04-27 19:20

    well done boys,good job indeed especially da boys in camaflash uniform.

  • Harold - 2012-04-27 19:52

    This whole story has nothing to do with criminals or the police the root cause of this shooting and the death of this man was caused by the bad health service we have in this country. I challenge any one who made a negative comment towards this sick man to go and get help of any sort at our pathetic health system. And these pathetic reporters who write these articles go and find work somewhere else your lack of detail and accuracy points to a poor education and training. It is so sad that Blade never reads the rubbish you write.

      Michelle - 2012-04-28 16:31


  • wilma.botts - 2012-04-27 20:11

    You morons have not clearly read the story that the man suffered with BIOPOLAR now first do some research on the condition then start pointing fingers....hope none of your family memembers have this condition or suffer with depression as you may find yourselves in this same situation oneday. Condolences to the mans family. Hope the hostages get the councelling they need.

      rhodgkiss - 2012-04-28 07:54

      so according to you, bipolar is an adequate defence for murder? Consider how many persons are diagnosed as "bipolar" nowadays..makes for a lot of justifiable murder cases, doesn't it..

  • idevilliers1 - 2012-04-28 01:09

    A job well done by our saps! The men should be commended on their good work. No innocent people were badly injured or killed thanks to their quick and suffiecient response. As for you fools that have negative comments about the excellent job the saps did today, would you have prefered innocent people to die first before the man was arreasted or shot. What would you fools said then? It could have been any of our mothers or sisters being held at gun point! Think about it!!!

  • Precious - 2012-04-28 07:26

    Wasn't there the otherway 2 stop hm except killing hm? Couldn't they just shoot hm on the leg maybe just to scare hm, not 2 take hs life away...(jst thinking) no offence.

      Michelle - 2012-04-28 16:36

      precisely.. an innocent, sickly man, taken out, and tonight a few "bravos and gun happy" ppl celebrate with the rugby, while hes poor family have to endure the costs of a funeral, and their loss of income. Pathetic how easily it is to kill, but not to cure. I pray for all sick ppl in SA..

  • Bongani - 2012-04-28 07:48

    I knew Bongani,we grew up together.I was their neighbour from 1979 to 1985.I have been visiting him and his family since year 2000 to date.Its true he became mentally round about 2003.The people to blame here is the hospital personnel for failure to provide police with medical information,mind you he has been their patient fo close to ten years so they knew him well. Myself I am a policeman,I would have done the same if I was provided with the information. REST IN PEACE BONGANi

      rhodgkiss - 2012-04-28 07:56

      Question is, how is it possible for a mental patient to be in possession of a firearm, and remain in possession of one for almost 10 years?

  • henk63 - 2012-04-28 08:11

    I think he knew that he would be shot. They call it suicide by police.

  • Gail - 2012-04-28 11:29

    The Westville "psych" hospital Ward has been closed. There is a shortage of hospital beds for mental health emergencies in Durban. The closest ward is at the Entabeni hospital, and that is often full. Sad that a tragedy like this must happen to bring this to the publics attention. I think that more could have been achieved with the correct medication, understanding, kind words and a few tranquilizers. Our police need more training in the SOFTLY, SOFTLY approach. Why must our violent and confrontational past alway condemn us to shoot our way out of trouble? I too am shocked by the aggressive comments of readers - the " Yeah,Ja, Shoot the bugger!" category. After 18 years of Freedom its about time we should be tried by to live up to our expectations of peace. The whole of society; public, medical personell, especially nursing staff and the police need to learn to try the kind and peaceful. Ubuntu applied again! Ghandi where are you, we need you now! To the Christians it is called turning the other cheek.

      Michelle - 2012-04-28 16:37

      beautifully written Gail.. :)

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