Woman’s paintball ordeal

2015-06-10 11:38
Angela Truter, 20, who was chased by paintball-shooting menaces in Pietermaritzburg last Thursday.

Angela Truter, 20, who was chased by paintball-shooting menaces in Pietermaritzburg last Thursday. (Jonathan Burton, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - A young woman on Tuesday described her terrifying ordeal after a high-speed chase where hooligans with paintball guns targeted her vehicle.

Wartburg resident Angela Truter, 20, said she was driving alone on ­Hyslop Road outside the Royal Show grounds at around 23:30 on Thursday when the driver of a Toyota Fortuner started chasing after her.

Truter said as she passed the grounds, the Fortuner was parked in her lane and the occupants were speaking to people in another vehicle parked alongside on the pavement. As Truter overtook, she was startled to see the Fortuner’s flashing lights in her rearview mirror, with the large SUV close behind her.

Nervous and alone, Truter said she sped towards the traffic circle on Armitage and Chatterton roads, trying desperately to escape.

Truter raced up Armitage Road onto the bridge over the N3 where she heard what she thought was “stones being thrown at [her] car”.

Unbeknownst to the young driver, the attackers chasing her had opened fire on her vehicle with paintball guns, splattering orange paint along the side and back of her bakkie.

“It was terrifying. I just started praying. I’m normally quite independent but I kept imagining the worst,” Truter said.

On the bridge, Truter said she was doing such a high speed in her attempts to escape that her bakkie “drifted” as she took the corner onto the on-ramp to the N3. “I was driving like a bat out of hell,” Truter said as she described how she reached speeds up to 120 km/h before she got onto the freeway.

Keeping her wits about her, once she got onto the freeway, Truter stuck to the slower left lane while her attackers were in pursuit, and swung her car “at the last second” onto the Chota Motala Road off-ramp.

Her attackers, who could not make the same turn fast enough, continued on the N3 and disappeared soon after.

Truter said she drove all the way home to Wartburg keeping a close eye on her rearview mirror, hoping the attackers would not reappear.

“I did not realise the severity of it until I got home and told my parents about it,” Truter said.

Truter said she and her mother spent an hour and a half cleaning the oil-based paint from her bakkie that night.

Now, the family are on a mission to find the attackers, asking businesses in the area if they have any camera footage that can be used to identify the driver of the Toyota Fortuner.

“They were the ones who put me at an inconvenience by blocking the road and they still had the audacity to shoot at me,” Truter said.

In light of the incident, Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese encouraged all members of the public to report cases timeously, whether they are the victims or witnesses.

“This is an unfortunate situation which amounts to malicious damage to property and intimidation. Much worse could have happened as well,” Ngobese said

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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