Shot cop’s daily dread

2018-06-05 16:00
Constable Dinesh Govender and his wife Reshmee before the shooting.

Constable Dinesh Govender and his wife Reshmee before the shooting. (File)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Shot on duty three years ago while attending to a robbery scene in Eastwood, policeman Dinesh Govender lives in constant fear that it will happen again.

“Every day I go to work, knowing that I might not return home,” Govender said in a victim impact statement that was included in a high court judgment in which three men were jailed for 25 years for the attack on Govender and another policeman.

Govender added that his scars will always remind him of the shooting, and of how his child spent most of the second year of her life with him in hospital.

“All I can say is that my life and my family’s lives will never be the same due to other human beings’ greedy and selfish acts.”

Pietermaritzburg high court Judge Jerome Mnguni on Monday included Govender’s emotionally charged statement as part of his judgment in sentencing three men who attempted to murder Govender and another policeman, Reginald Iyer, to 10 years’ imprisonment and an additional 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances — a total of 25 years.

Fortune Simphiwe Msomi (31), Style Alex Auto Mgeyane (31) and Sphamandla Welcome Mbonambi (42), all of Hillcrest, were part of a gang that robbed an Eastwood factory.

The judge said that on the morning of April 28, 2015, the men and their accomplices went to rob the business owners, Chinese nationals Kang Weng and his wife Qizhu Zhen. They knew the owners kept money and thought they would walk away with R3 million.

“You armed yourselves with various firearms and AK47 assault rifles,” Judge Mnguni said.

He added that the men abandoned their first attempt to rob the business because they “felt that something was going to go wrong”.

They returned that evening and accosted the guard. They then waited for Weng and instructed the guard to open the gate as normal. The men took Weng inside the premises and robbed him of R80 000 cash and other items.

A security official was first to arrive at the scene, having responded to a panic button alarm. The robbers took his firearm and held him at gunpoint in the guard room. Soon afterwards Govender and Iyer arrived.

Judge Mnguni said the men fired shots at them, seriously injuring Govender. The doctor told him he was lucky to be alive. A portion of his lung had to be removed as a result of being shot by a high velocity firearm.

The judge then referred to the victim impact statements made by Govender and his wife Reshmee.

In them, Govender described the psychological, emotional and physical trauma he suffered because of the crime as well as his and his family’s financial loss.

“I give my life to the police but the police have not been there to support me,” said Govender.

He spoke about his follow-up visits to hospital and how the bills started to pile up. It took a great toll on him and his family, but they supported each other, he said.

His wife spoke about how her life changed the moment she heard her husband had been shot. When he came home from hospital, he could not talk, walk, eat or drink. She had to assist him with everything.

Describing the shooting, Govender said: “As soon as I got out of the vehicle I heard the sounds of guns going off.

“I could see flashes as if it were fireworks and time just stood still. I suddenly became aware of a warm wet feeling running down the left side of my chest …

“All I could see was blood spraying and I could feel that I was getting weak and I just remember going down next to the vehicle and I must have lost consciousness.”

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.