Provincial police probing Sea Point selfie arrest

2019-05-25 11:04
23-year-old Esethu Mcinjana takes a selfie on the promenade in Sea Point. (Esethu Mcinjana)

23-year-old Esethu Mcinjana takes a selfie on the promenade in Sea Point. (Esethu Mcinjana)

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Western Cape police have launched an investigation into the arrest of a woman who had been taking selfies in Sea Point while waiting for a job interview.

"The investigation is led by a senior official from the Cape Town cluster. Once it is finalised, details will be made known," said Brigadier Novela Potelwa.

She said that police are committed to upholding the constitution and are expected to abide by the SAPS code of conduct, which speaks to treating everyone humanely.

"If any police official is found to have transgressed any of the aspects cited above, decisive action will be taken."

News24 previously reported that Esethu Mcinjana had been sitting on a bench on the promenade waiting for a job interview at a nearby hotel on May 19, when she was approached by two police officers.

READ: 'I feel violated and angry': Woman, who was taking selfies while sitting on a bench in Sea Point, arrested 

"They asked what I was doing there and then started searching my bag," Mcinjana recalled.

The police officers found a house key and a gate remote, along with her curriculum vitae.

She was later arrested, allegedly as a suspect in a string of car robberies in the area.

The 23-year-old was forced to spend a night in jail, despite protesting her innocence. 

"It was so cold, I had five or six blankets on me," Mcinjana said. "I couldn't even sleep, I was crying the whole night."

Mcinjana told News24 she had been looking for work for months and missed out on her chance at employment due to the incident.

"There is a certain company that is helping me at the moment, they're going to help me to sue the state," she said.

"I'm just hoping to get justice, that's all. I didn't commit any crime..."

She confirmed she met with lawyers on Friday and plans to sue the police for wrongful arrest.

Sea Point police spokesperson, Captain Elizabeth Munro, told GroundUp Mcinjana had been found to be in possession of "vehicle breaking implements", but said there were "no prospects of successful prosecution as discussed with the senior prosecutor".

GroundUp has since reported that the hotel confirmed with police on Sunday that Mcinjana had an appointment for an interview. She was still kept overnight, and attempts to get further comment were unsuccessful.

The Western Cape Police Ombudsman was unaware of the case and has asked for Mcinjana to lodge a complaint.

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