- Motorist Thalente Ngidi is awaiting surgery after allegedly being slapped and punched in the face by an EMPD officer on Sunday.
- According to her sister, Siphumelele Ngidi, Thalente had asked the officer to wear his mask properly when talking to them.
- The EMPD is currently investigating the incident.
Thalente Ngidi, 35, has been in hospital since Sunday after allegedly being slapped and punched in the face by an Ekurhuleni Metro Police (EMPD) officer, leaving her nose fractured in two places.
According to her sister, Siphumelele Ngidi, 37, who was with her at the time, Thalente had simply asked the officer to wear his mask while speaking to them.
She will now need surgery following the alleged assault.
The incident was being investigated, according to the EMPD.
Speaking to News24, Siphumelele said they were in a car with their children when an officer stopped them for allegedly skipping a stop sign.
She added she did not have her licence on her, but had an affidavit explaining why.
When the officer noticed the ID number was recorded incorrectly on the affidavit, he pulled his mask down to ask for the correct number, Siphumelele said.
"This is where Thalente asked him to pull up his mask [but] he ignored her."
According to Siphumelele, her sister had tried to explain to the officer he "is putting us in danger" by not wearing his mask while being close to them.
When the officer did not pull up his mask, Thalente decided to record him.
This seemingly upset him.
"He was actually so rude, he said, 'I am not your boyfriend you can't go around taking photos of me, you have no right to take photos of me'," Siphumelele said.
She added the officer then ran to the passenger door where Thalente was sitting and proceeded to drag her out of the car to his police van.
"This is where he pulled out the handcuffs and attempted to put them on her."
Siphumelele said they were confused as to why Thalente was being arrested, adding she had only asked for the officer to wear his mask properly.
"He tried to handcuff her and as she tried to run away from him, he grabbed her by the bum and grabbed and pulled her by the waistband of her pants."
She claimed the officer then slapped Thalente, threw her phone on the ground and punched her in the face.
Feeling threatened, Siphumelele called her husband for help but when he arrived, the officer allegedly cocked and aimed his gun at him.
Thalente was taken to the Dawn Park police station where the officer allegedly laid a charge against her.
"Thalente said there was a lady who took her statement, but a detective in plainclothes walked in, took away the paperwork and tore it up and threw it away," Siphumelele said.
"They said she cannot open a case because the officer had opened a case against her of assault and interference."
On several occasions, the family asked the police to let Thalente go to hospital but officers would not allow it.
According to Siphumelele, the officer insisted he wanted to take her to the hospital which caused a squabble.
'I hope this never happens again'
Three hours later, an ambulance was called.
On the way to the hospital, the ambulance was followed by three police officers.
"They kept trying to stop the ambulance on the way to the hospital, he was in a car behind us and there was another EMPD van with two officers," Siphumelele said.
When they arrived, they were berated for going to a private hospital - the police allegedly told paramedics they should have taken her to a government hospital.
"The biggest concern [is] I do not feel safe where I am - he knows where I live, he knows what car I drive … he can find out any other details and he knows where my sister is," Siphumelele said.
"To my knowledge, he hasn't been arrested, he hasn't been suspended.
"I hope this never happens again, but if he is still working as a traffic officer, this is very likely going to happen again," she added.
EMPD spokesperson Kobeli Mokheseng said the department was aware of the incident and was investigating it.
"We have advised that the complainant must come to our office in Kempton Park so that we can obtain a statement from her.
"We will also call the officer to find out what occurred, because nobody knows what actually occurred when that video was captured, as a result we are conducting an investigation," Mokheseng added.