Eyewitness tells of Krugersdorp 'execution'

2015-11-03 07:09
A screengrab of footage of the incident. (YouTube)

A screengrab of footage of the incident. (YouTube)

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Johannesburg - A man employed at a bottle store in Lewisham, Krugersdorp, said he asked Khulekani Mpanza what the police activity a few metres behind him was all about moments before Mpanza was shot dead.

- Read more: 4 cops to appear for 'execution'

Thapelo Segatso said Mpanza was walking very fast on foot in the opposite direction of where police were searching a Toyota Conquest.

"It seemed like he was holding a phone. I asked him what was happening up there," said Segatso.

"He didn't say anything. Instead he pulled a gun and started shooting at the police who were now following behind him."

The bottle store worker ducked and went for cover as police and Mpanza exchanged fire.

'Checking for cameras'

Segatso's colleague, Keagen Goncalves said the police officers were in fact on the scene because they had called them.

Goncalves said they had noticed Mpanza and a gang of other men acting suspiciously on October 19.

They noticed two Toyota Conquest vehicles - one was silver and the other was white.

"They parked outside the shop and it seemed like there were different guys going into different stores. There were around eight of them. They were entering the shops and it seemed like they were checking for cameras," said Goncalves.

- Read more: Cops nabbed for 'brutal execution' of suspected criminal

Two of the eight men entered the bottle store where Goncalves and Segatso worked. They bought a two litre cooldrink but they could be seen looking around the shop, trying to spot the cameras. 

"We made the call to the police because at around this time, criminals like to [take] chances," Goncalves said, referring to crimes committed around the festive season.

The police arrived shortly afterwards and Goncalves said they told them that the men travelling in the vehicles had made their way around the corner.

"The police called for backup and went up to search for the guys," said Goncalves.

Exchanged fire

A short while later, they saw Mpanza come down the road. He and the police then exchanged fire.

Some of the bullet holes hit a nearby shop causing some damage.

Mpanza had run a short distance before he was eventually shot and killed.

He was shot outside an IT company which had several cameras placed around the entrance.

This meant Mpanza's last moments were captured on camera.

In the video footage, the police are seen shooting at him as a civilian jumps into a delivery vehicle, banging the door behind him.

The first shot seemingly hit Mpanza on the hand, forcing him to drop his weapon.

As he lay on the ground, one policeman is seen coming forward and he fires another shot at Mpanza. This shot reportedly hit Mpanza in the head, killing him.

Another officer is then seen moving towards the wounded Mpanza and he kicks him.

On Monday, the scene where Mpanza had been shot dead had been cleared. Only the remnants of what seemed like chalk markings remained at the scene.

It had since been established that Mpanza's gun had been stolen from a security guard in Soweto.

Officers arrested

Meanwhile, the four police officers who were allegedly at the scene of the crime have since been arrested. They will appear in the Krugersdorp Magistrate's Court where they will face a charge of murder.

Goncalves said he did not feel the police acted inappropriately when they shot and killed Mpanza.

"They never had a chance to search the guy after hitting him. No one knew whether he still had another weapon on him and there was a civilian there," he said.

Meanwhile, Gauteng police spokesperson Colonel Noxolo Kweza said one person had been taken in for questioning following the incident.

"He was later released," said Kweza, adding that the man had not been charged.

The four are presently in custody and have since been served with notices of intention to suspend them.

Read more on:    police  |  johannesburg  |  police brutality  |  crime

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