A Facebook post by JP Smith, Mayco member for safety and security, claiming that a suspect arrested in a thwarted hijacking was thought to be a detective at the Rondebosch Police Station, has been proven to be false.
On Monday 26 September at 3:00, a law enforcement team on patrol in the Cape Town CBD noted a hijacking in progress at a fuel station in Buitengracht Street.
Using their vehicle to block the hijacked vehicle’s getaway, the officers proceeded to arrest the suspect behind the wheel.
The following day (Tuesday 27 September), Smith posted that “information later received suggests that the suspect arrested is believed to be a detective at Rondebosch SAPS, information is being followed up by officials this morning”.
The post was quickly picked up by various news agencies and splashed across social media.
WO Lyndon Sisam, spokesperson for Rondebosch Police Station, today (Wednesday September 28) issued a media statement, in which he confirmed that the alleged suspect detained in Cape Town for hijacking was not a Rondebosch police officer.
“The detective head, Captain Weston, confirmed that the person arrested is not a detective at Rondebosch. Furthermore, the photo sent by the Cape Town detective, the name, and his ID number [which was] given indicate that he is not a police officer,” said Sisam.
He added that he would like for the City of Cape Town to be held accountable “and to do a retraction to restore the image of the SAPS in the media and on all social media platforms”.
Smith posted a response to the media statement on Facebook this afternoon, saying that the City was relieved to discover that the claim by the arrested person was “not truthful”.