No reason for Macia to be in cells, court hears

2015-07-31 13:20
The nine accused of killing Mico Macia. (Adam Wakefield, News24)

The nine accused of killing Mico Macia. (Adam Wakefield, News24)

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Pretoria - There was no reason for Mido Macia, the Mozambican taxi driver dragged behind a police van, to be in the Daveyton police station cells, the High Court in Pretoria heard on Friday.

Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) investigator M Ramadwa testified he had found Macia lying dead on the floor with blood around his head in a waiting cell at the Daveyton police station on the night of February 23, 2013.

He was wearing only a red T-shirt, underpants and socks.

On checking the occurrence book and cell register, Ramadwa found Macia did not appear in the register.

"There was no reason for that person to be in the cells.

"In the assault case opened against the deceased... there was no arresting statement in the docket. Furthermore, there was no notice of rights explained [to Macia]," he said.

Not guilty plea

Former Daveyton policemen Meshack Malele, 46, Thamsamqa Mgema, 35, Percy Jonathan Mnisi, 26, Bongamusa Mdluli, 25, Sipho Sydwell Ngobeni, 30, Lungisa Gwababa, 31, Bongani Kolisi, 27, Linda Sololo, 56 and Matome Walter Ramatlou, 37 have pleaded not guilty to a charge of murdering Macia.

They were arrested after a video emerged in 2013 of Macia being dragged behind a police van through the streets of Daveyton on the East Rand.

Macia was confronted by two policemen for obstructing traffic with his taxi.

His driver's licence and taxi were confiscated after which the policemen called for back-up.

His hands were allegedly handcuffed to part of the interior of a police van while his body remained outside. The police then drove off, dragging him behind the vehicle for a distance while a second police vehicle followed.

Blunt force injuries

The attack was captured on a cellphone and the video went viral soon after he died in custody, sparking international outrage.

The Daveyton police station cell commander testified eight of the policemen had slapped Macia after he was taken to a holding cell and he also saw them forcibly pushing him on to a bench.

He only saw Macia lying on the floor hours later, but the detainee had already died by the time paramedics arrived.

State pathologist Dr Solly Skosana testified Macia had suffered extensive blunt force injuries to his brain and skull as well as severe injuries to his chest which ultimately led to a lack of oxygen and his death.

The trial continues.

Read more on:    police  |  ipid  |  mido macia  |  johannesburg  |  police brutality  |  crime
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