Elderly man shot as tensions rise in Westbury - police, protesters face off

Police fire rubber bullets at protesters. (Trevor Kunene, Gallo Images, Daily Sun, file)
Police fire rubber bullets at protesters. (Trevor Kunene, Gallo Images, Daily Sun, file)

A community member was shot just above the eyebrow after he tried to broker peace between violent protestors and police.

The elderly community leader, who is yet to be identified, was whisked away with a bloody face, caused by a rubber bullet.

A group of protesters threw several rocks at police vans monitoring the volatile situation in Westbury - in on-and-off standoffs with police on Monday.

READ: Rubber bullets fired to disperse Westbury protesters

The troubled community took to the streets of Westbury in the early hours of Monday morning protesting high levels of gangsterism and alleged drug dealing in the area.

"The police are trigger-happy; that's why this group is throwing rocks. Our protest started peacefully and the situation heightened when the police started shooting and provoking us," resident Hillary van de Merwe told News24 on the scene.

A standoff between protestors and police had ensued yet again.

"These people fight for drug corners and innocent people die. We are tired," resident Vanessa Williams told News24.

READ: Westbury calm ahead of court appearance of two men for woman's murder

Police have not yet confirmed the number of arrests made in Monday's protest.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonodwana told News24 earlier on Monday that the suspect arrested for the murder of a woman last week would make his first appearance at the Johannesburg Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Later on Monday, a 21-year-old suspect that was arrested during Westbury protests last week after a woman and child were shot appeared on charges of murder and attempted murder. The case was postponed to October 8.

The unrest continues.

*This story has been updated to reflect the appearance of one of the suspects in the magistrate's court.

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