Child held at gunpoint as robbers hit Copesville home

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Pietermaritzburg - A four-year-old child had a gun put to his head as robbers ransacked his family’s Copesville home on Monday evening.

Speaking to The Witness yesterday, Carnelian Drive resident Satish Muniraj described how armed robbers stabbed him and attacked his family during a 15-minute ordeal.

Muniraj had just entered his driveway in his bakkie at about 6 pm, with his wife following in her car, when he was approached by a man who he said walked into the yard casually.

The man suddenly hurled himself towards Maniraj, brandishing a knife and demanding his wallet. During the confrontation, another man approached his wife, who was getting out of her vehicle, and pointed a gun at her.

“I took all my cash from my wallet and placed it in his hand, but he leaned forward and stabbed me in the shoulder,” Muniraj said.

A third accomplice entered the yard and the trio forced the couple into their home, where Muniraj’s daughter and her two children were waiting.

“They made us sit in the lounge and threatened us with the gun, asking for cellphones and jewellery. One man went into the room and began ransacking for valuables,” Muniraj said.

The robbers then forced the family into a bedroom, where one pointed his gun at Muniraj’s grandson.

“They were in the house for more than 10 minutes before they left. My wife is still shaken up and my grandson cannot sleep as he is deeply disturbed by what happened,” Muniraj said.

Mountain Rise police spokesperson Warrant Officer Joshua Maistry said the men fled on foot after ransacking the house, making off with about R2 300 in cash and about R4 000 in jewellery and cellphones.

“According to information from the community, one of the homes in the area has CCTV cameras and the investigation team will be approaching them for video footage,” Maistry said.

“No arrests have been made at this stage. However, police are determined, with the help of their informer network, to make an arrest soon.”

Maistry said the community was urged to take precautions to safeguard their property and themselves.

“Criminals are opportunists and they are targeting areas where there are soft targets or vulnerable people,” Maistry said, adding that Mountain Rise station commander Brigadier Boxer Pillay appealed to Copesville residents to work with the police.

Residents were urged to contact radio control on 10111 or Pillay at 082 418 2018.

“All information received will be dealt with confidentially, resulting in planned intelligence-driven crime prevention operations to apprehend suspects and recover stolen property,” Maistry said.

• amil.umraw@witness.co.za

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