Hostage-taker was 'bipolar' - reports

2012-04-27 14:09

Johannesburg - A gunman who was shot after taking a woman hostage at Westville Hospital in Durban on Friday may have been suffering from bipolar disorder, say reports.

The man had held one woman hostage for almost four hours before she was rescued, said KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Colonel Jay Naicker.

She had sustained a gunshot wound.

Initial police reports were that he had taken two hostages but police later found the second woman safe in the hospital.

"After negotiating.... the guy was [still] not responding," said Naicker.

He had been holding his hostage in the hospital's kitchen. Police entered and shot him dead.

It was believed the man may have been suffering from a bipolar disorder.

"At approximately 07:40, the suspect demanded to see a doctor or nurse and became impatient and began firing shots randomly," Naicker said.

Three injured

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

Three people were injured.

The hospital said among those injured were a nurse who was struck by a ricocheted shell, a security guard who was shot in the leg, and a member of the catering staff who sustained wounds to her leg and shoulder.

They were receiving treatment and were in a stable condition.

Hospital spokesperson Leanne Nyiri said the gunman earlier took a receptionist hostage.

She was taken to the hospital's first floor but managed to escape.

  • Shirley - 2012-04-27 14:25

    At this point it all appears to be speculation. However if he was bipolar,that is not an excuse for having a gun,hijacking a taxi etc. Bipolar sufferers have been dealt an awful blow in life,they are often shunned by society and I have a deep sympathy for their afflictio. This does not however give licence to endangering other people who themselves are ill and are innocent!

      Leon - 2012-04-27 15:29

      I'm bipolar; yet I never had the urge to take hostages or wreak havoc. Sometimes I'm down, sometimes I'm up; maybe a bit more than the average person; but I've never had any criminal tendencies. Even if this person were bi-polar, it's very definitely secondary to him just being plain criminal.

      allison.steedman - 2012-04-27 16:02

      @Searcher you are clearly in a more fortunate position than this patient - no doubt you are on medical aid or can afford treatment and medication which he probably did not have the privlige of - and perhaps you are not aware of this, but bi-polar is not usually evident as a standalone mental illness - it is very often accompanied by something else - add, adhd, alcoholism, drug addiction etc - it is easy to sit in the comfort of your own home on your little ivory throne and decide that you are the ideal and average bi-polar patient and that others should all be like you.

  • SaffaSeun - 2012-04-27 14:30

    Well done SAP for doing your job! If you pick up a gun and take hostages and starts shooting randomly, then get what you deserve! Stop looking for reasons to protect people, when they are guilty. Well done. One less violent killer to deal with in the useless justice system.

  • Africanism - 2012-04-27 14:37

    May the officer who took him down die the same way.the officer should have continued with the negotiation the man would have surrendered but the police want to make a name for themselves and shot him.

      Shirley - 2012-04-27 14:47

      He would of surrendered??? After shooting how many more people? I hope one day when you need a policeman to rescue you from a madman-he doesnt allow you to die when he could of ended the situation! Seriously,your callous call for the policeman to die just shows your true character!

      drummond.doig1 - 2012-04-27 14:50

      The hostage he was holding was time to keep negotiating while the hostage could have been bleeding to death from a gunshot wound.

      Olebogeng - 2012-04-27 14:58

      They don't know how to negotiate,remember they shot 4yrs boy, who was playing with toy and thought he had a gun!!!!!

      Ben - 2012-04-27 15:01

      Next time a gun-man holds people hostage, we know who to call to negotiate with them. @Africanism, please put up your no. so that we may all note it down...

      Inja - 2012-04-27 15:07

      Negotiate when three people are already injured, you guys are really crazy. Well done police

      Tswaledi - 2012-04-27 15:08

      Come on Africanism, you cant be serious.

      bmhadebe - 2012-04-27 15:43

      I hope the next hostage scenario that shocks the country will involve you as the one being held hostage so that u can't negotiate ur way out! What a dumb comment

      jeandre.welgemoed - 2012-04-27 15:50

      What a hypocrite, you have the nerve to wish death on one of the few heroes we have left that's out there to serve and protect! I myself being in the police force have every right to call you a moron! Police day everyday because of criminals, bipolar or not this man sure knew what he was doing, just prior to this he hijacked a taxi in marianhill! Maybe you are bipolar yourself, because your comment says a lot about your mentality!

      allison.steedman - 2012-04-27 16:04

      It is doubtful he would have surrendered - if you are not familiar with bi-polar you should google it. if he was in a manic phase and un treated with medications or treated with the wrong medications (normal SSRI anti-depressants are lethal for bi-polar patients) there would have been no reasoning with him at all.

      shireen.abbas - 2012-04-27 16:04

      @aficanism - hope some loon takes ur ass hostage next !

      Zebedee - 2012-04-27 17:32

      Africanism the only reason I can think you would say something like that is either you are related to the deceased or the shape of your nose is restricting oxygen flow to that pea between your ears

      Cedric - 2012-04-27 17:37

      if he is bi polar he should not be in posession of a firearm in the 1st place....

      Cedric - 2012-04-27 17:44

      clearly you have not seen the front end of a barrel pointed at you....go hug some trees wife and 18 month daughter was there today...

      carpejugulim - 2012-04-27 17:44

      It never ceases to amaze me everyone bitches about the crime rate ... sorry people, bi-polar or not taking hostages and shooting people is a crime ... yet when the SAP do their job and remove the threat from others then the SAP didn't do it the right way, it wasn't like we see on American SWAT. Seriously if you can do a better job get out of your armchair and get out into society and DO IT ... stop whining!!!

      Slick - 2012-04-27 23:38

      Grr as a law enforcement person that lays his life on the line 24/7 so others can live, KNOW THIS!! None of you people and trolls here know the reason why the Bastard Bigot was shot dead so before you lament or condemn the the reason/s... find out the real FACTS and stop reacting to hearsay and BS!!..Grrrr!!

      Slick - 2012-04-28 00:12

      @ Africanism...... Go take yourself a hostage/s.... Do it..I Challenge you, DO IT!! I cant wait to make a name for myself!! "For what you sow, so shall you reap"...You sad, sorry good for nothing Freak!!

      sbothma - 2012-04-28 03:20

      Obvious troll is obvious

  • Tswaledi - 2012-04-27 15:06

    Why carry a gun to the hospital in the first place?

  • Gregory - 2012-04-27 15:23

    Bipolar and a gun is a recipe for disaster. It does seem like the police where eager to kill him, for a country with no death penalty.

  • Stewart - 2012-04-27 16:02

    Police not competent too carry guns. They cauld have shot hostage. Read prior article about these idiots.

      shireen.abbas - 2012-04-27 16:10

      True , tho we can't brand them all together as incompetent that would be unfair to the real hard working heroes in saps

      Robbie - 2012-04-27 16:22

      @ Stewart you idiot- It wasn't your ordinary policeman that shot this guy,it was the special task force. These guys don't play. Go and google them.

      Stewart - 2012-04-27 16:30

      Robbie. Some of the hawks also had guns removed. Nothing surprises me. This is a country where all standards havr been dropped regardless. Moron

      Cedric - 2012-04-27 17:39

      its not your local station that attends to these the special task force and trust me they can shoot.....

  • Jean-Louis - 2012-04-27 16:22

    You point a gun at someone - you invite the police to take some drastic action - Do you know in what state the hostages were ? Not knowing in they would be still alive in the next 2 minutes ? Praying hard that the police would do something soon to rescue them !!!!

  • Jean-Louis - 2012-04-27 16:33

    And by the way - that policeman that shot the guy will not sleep very well for some nights now - he killed someone - yes but also saved 2 or 3 other lives - make your choice ! Smarterthanyou - will you take the decision ? he "may" have surrendered, but he "may" have kill 3 peoples as well "before" surrendering or killing himself !!! In a situation like this, there is actually not a lot of choices - rescuing the innocents is 1st and then the "criminal"

  • mario.dippenaar - 2012-04-27 16:37

    I wish my wife was bipolar, then at least she'll be happy half of the time.

  • les.cunningham1 - 2012-04-27 17:22

    "a nurse who was struck by a ricocheted "shell". " No News24, shells do not ricoched, bullets do, big time. Get it right.

  • Cedric - 2012-04-27 17:35

    no time for post mortems...he needed to be put away...what if as we allways say my kid was wife and baby girl were there....sorry for him family comes first

  • Cedric - 2012-04-27 17:42

    this is so south african...bitch and moan about the violent crime....cry like babies when special units are closed down.....and then when the police do their job all the tree huggers bitch about that....get off the fence and take a stance.....well done to the special task force..need more of this

  • mtsolong - 2012-04-27 18:00

    Well done police u did the great job to save lives. U know mos de life was in danger we shoot after warnings. The security company contract must be terminated why dat guy was nt searched?

  • felican - 2012-04-27 18:00

    AND HOW did this 'Bi-polar' get a gun into the Hospital pray tell??? Well now the cops are going to be n for the hi-jump again - because he was shot dead after shooting all over the place and endangering the welfare of the hospital patients, staff and others. Oh for so and so sakes and all in the name of Freedom - UGH this is getting beyond ridiculous.

      Gratten - 2012-04-28 15:08

      He was not "Bi-polar." He was Bi-sexual. That's what stuffed his head up.

  • graham.wollentine - 2012-04-27 18:11

    I understand Bi polar and there are different degrees.Being a chronic sufferer of depression for 15 years now, it is very difficult for people who are suffering to see the good through all the bad they are feeling. It is sad but some people are never able to be successfully treated and sometimes for them death is actually a relief from their misery. When you are suffering it is easy to feel as if no one can or will help you.Unless you have been there and felt that feeling. I can understand how people don't understand. Bi Polar and Depression is not a defect of the brain it is very similar to Diabetes the body does not make enough of the good chemicals in the brain to keep people on an even keel.Sad.

  • Andile - 2012-04-27 18:34

    But the media is really unfair sometimes. To those that stay in Durban, imagine if the article read: Hostage taker killed in King Edward hospital. The media would have had a fields day blaming government hospitals blah blah. But since this took place in a Pvt hospital (Life Hospital nogal), there is no frenzy about it. I hate people who are racists, trust me I do a lot. But I have a feeling that since the race is not being mentioned, this must have been a white person. But than again crime has no colour and it knows no boundaries. I'm sorry to those who will be offended, but I'm just trying to show you guys how unfair the playing field is.

      graham.wollentine - 2012-04-27 19:42

      you probably right regardless everyone needs the opportunity to have treatment for their condition

      Lara - 2012-04-28 06:47

      Please tell me how Bongani Shange is a white person? Racist, are you?

  • Slick - 2012-04-27 23:53

    Grr as a law enforcement person that lays his life on the line 24/7 so others can live, KNOW THIS!! None of you people and trolls here know the reason why the Bastard Bigot was shot dead so before you lament or condemn the the reason/s... find out the real FACTS and stop reacting to hearsay and BS!!.. IS THIS THE UNWARRANTED CONDEMNATION WE GET AND DESERVE FROM UN INFORMED PERSONS... FOR PROTECTING THEM AND PEOPLE WE WILL NEVER KNOW!! Grrrr!!

      Lacrimose - 2012-04-28 04:04

      I do not lament or condemn and believe that it had to play out the way it did. However, I do worry when you call suspects "Bastard Bigots". It is not part of your mandate to decide whether their parents were married or not, nor what their biases might be. Law Enforcement in this instance is about assessing, managing and minimising risk - not making a diagnosis and/or judgement. Whatever this particular person's issues were, we can all agree he was in an irrational state. To take that to bastardly bigotry is a mile too far

  • glennmurray.spencer - 2012-04-28 04:25

    how can you be injured by a ricocheted shell. Please are you people competent news reporters? I also notice reporters refer to a gun. A gun is not a pistol,revolver or rifle.

  • pages:
  • 1