Motorist in the dock for allegedly running over Stellenbosch security guard

2019-05-10 08:27
The Stellenbosch shopping complex where the security guard was run over (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

The Stellenbosch shopping complex where the security guard was run over (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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The motorist alleged to have driven over a security guard in a Stellenbosch parking area, is expected to appear in court on Friday, amid widespread condemnation and anger at the incident.

The suspect, 38, handed himself over to police this week following the incident which was caught on video at Die Boord shopping centre in Saffraan Avenue on the afternoon of April 30.

He faces a charge of attempted murder.

In the video, which went viral on social media, the driver of a white bakkie can be seen talking to the security guard outside a shopping complex.

WATCH: Security guard run over by motorist at Stellenbosch shopping centre

The guard gestures to the driver to not drive in his intended direction, seemingly indicating that it was a one-way.

The interaction goes on for a few seconds, before the driver runs over the security guard in full view of the people in the parking lot.

One onlooker tried to stop the vehicle, which can be seen speeding off, leaving the guard motionless on the ground.

'Nice guy'

When News24 visited the scene on Thursday morning, a few cars were seen turning up the one-ways in the outdoor parking lot, seemingly not aware they were going in the wrong direction, while others appeared to pause briefly before dashing into parking spots, also ignoring the one-way only arrows.

Staff at the Superspar said a woman's loud screams alerted them to the incident which had already played itself out. They ran from the store and saw a man lying in the parking area. They thought he was dead.

A colleague, who spoke to News24 on condition of anonymity, said he and the victim, "a nice guy", also worked together on a previous security job. He was shocked when he found out what had happened.

It is understood that the guard has since been discharged from hospital.

(Jenna Etheridge, News24)

The parking lot where the guard was run over (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

'It's a miracle he is alive'

When News24 visited his home, he was at a medical check-up.

His neighbour who chose to be identified as Pinky, said she has known him for a few years. She said she could not believe what had happened.

"It is a miracle he is alive. If you see him, you would never even know that happened to him as he is walking," she said, shaking her head.

She said he was in a lot of pain.

Two lawyers have offered their services to the guard for free.

Advocate Andre Bezuidenhout, who is a Stellenbosch resident, expressed his shock on Wednesday.

"I think everybody in Stellenbosch is just outraged as to the audacity of this motor vehicle driver to have committed this insane act," said Bezuidenhout, who practices from Pitje Chambers in Johannesburg and is a member of the Johannesburg Bar.

"We are shocked by this conduct, to act this callous in open daylight... [it's] total disrespect of a human being, for life and for pedestrians."

Bezuidenhout and Basil de Sousa, of Abrahams & Gross Attorneys, were offering their services pro bono for "defenceless people against such reprehensible conduct".

De Sousa said the incident was "absolutely crazy" and he could not believe a person could act that way toward another.

The Ipic Property Group (which owns the shopping centre) and its shareholders condemned the hit-and-run.

Ipic's head of property management Mark Taylor said they were constantly liaising with the guard's employer to obtain information on his condition and assist where possible.

The group was co-operating with, and closely following, the police investigation and criminal court case.

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