A Buffalo City Metro (BCM) senior traffic officer was stabbed in the face while trying to prevent a man from robbing a woman of her cellphone in East London on Sunday afternoon.
He then moved to save the same robber from a mob.
Lawrence Constable was travelling on Fitchett Road with colleagues on Sunday afternoon when they encountered a woman being robbed, BCM spokesperson Samkelo Ngwenya said.
Ngwenya added when the woman saw the officials, she screamed for help and the suspect fled. Constable gave chase and eventually caught him.
He allegedly fought back and stabbed Constable above his eye.
After allegedly injuring the officer, the suspect tried to flee but was caught by residents and motorists who had also given chase.
The crowd then moved in and attacked him with stones and rocks, resulting in the very same injured officer coming to his aid and firing warning shots to disperse the crowd.
Upon arrival, Duncan Village police officers found the traffic officer with the suspect and arrested him.
The suspect suffered broken bones and was admitted to Frere Hospital, where he was under police guard, police spokesperson Captain Hazel Mqala said. A case of robbery is being investigated.
The suspect would appear in the East London Magistrate's Court as soon as he had recovered and discharged, added Mqala.