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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Another robbery on my doorstep



Since my return from the far Northern Transvaal (aka Limpopo province), where the overall atmosphere is not as tranquil as the photographs suggest, I’ve been having numerous irritable hassles of all sorts.  A recurring problem I'm experiencing almost on a daily basis is unexpected power cuts, apparently caused by thieves stealing copper wire in the area. The power cuts, sometimes as many as 3 per day, are brief, but they always occur when I’m in the middle of some-or-other computer task. I shudder to think what damage this has caused to the components on my pc!

The robbery…

A gang of armed robbers entered the Elardus Park Shopping Centre situated in Barnard Street, Pretoria-East, this morning at about 10:00. The gang pounced on the a jewellery shop, but were confronted by the shop owner who also carried a gun. This was not the first robbery the owner has experienced, so one can well imagine how gatvol (and also how well-prepared) he was… When three of the robbers pointed their guns at him he opened fire with his pistol and critically wounded one of them. The rest of the gang fled the scene amidst a hail of bullets, coming from the wrong (or is it right?) direction.

According to Warrant-Officer Annabel Middleton, a police spokesperson who was on the scene, two robbers made their getaway in a nearby parked vehicle, while the others fled on foot. One robber was apprehended later after he was identified on surveillance cameras as taking part in the robbery.

According to Middleton there is a strong possibility that the men can be linked to other crimes in the area, especially those involving other jewellery shops, among others: Wonderpark shopping centre, Mall@Reds in Centurion, and the Woodmead centre in Pretoria-East.

An emergency medical care assistant mentioned that the wounded robber was shot in the head and had lost quite a lot of blood. His chances of survival was thus slim.

The shop owner is unscathed. According to Middleton he will be sent for trauma counselling

Some of the facts in this posting were sourced from maroelamedia.co.za, who were the first online news agency to report on the incident.

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I arrived on the scene about 30 minutes after the shooting, with intentions of visiting the post office situated next-door to the jewellery shop. I counted about 5 police vehicles on the scene, but, as Murphy’s Law would have it I did not have my camera with me at the time. I returned later at about 12:00 hoping to find peace and order restored, but found a certain amount of chaos still reigning. Several people, mainly shop owners and assistants, were still standing around expressing varies degrees of horror and disgust concerning the fact that violent crime in the area has sky-rocketed to such an extent that it is not safe anymore to visit the local shopping centre.

The following two photographs were taken about 4 hours after the robbery:



2 comments :

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Hi Tia mysoa, could you please help and answer this question for me I think you might know the answer.
If the owner at the jewellery store killed and/or injured the black ape, what will happen to him?
Will they open a murder docket on him and confiscate his firearm for ballistics even if they know he used his legal firearm to kill the black ape. If they take his firearm will he ever get it back and if so how long could it take. In the meantime he has a murder wrap on him and no firearm to protect him in the future if they attack his store again.
Could you please let us know how this works in the new improved SA.

Tia Mysoa said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

@Anon – In short, in the new improved SA, the principle is as follows:

You may take the life of an attacker in order to protect your own (or someone else’s) life, or to prevent serious bodily harm to yourself (or someone else’s). It is unlawful to use lethal force in any other circumstances.

Complications arise when you kill someone solely for the purpose of protecting property, the argument (from the new liberal democratic point of view) being that property is not worth the life of the person that is stealing it from you.

The Public Prosecutor will judge every case on it own merits. In most cases involving an attack by a gang of armed robbers, for example, the defender’s firearm will seldom be confiscated permanently as such. However, the defender may (at any point during the investigation) be requested by the investigating officer dealing with the matter to submit his/her firearm for ballistic tests in order to reconstruct the events and to differentiate between the various types of ballistic evidence found on the scene. This seldom happens in the majority upon-shut cases involving armed robbery where the robbers all used AK-47’s, for example, and the defender used a 9mm pistol. However, in the event that it does become necessary, the owner of the firearm can request the investigating officer to speed up the process.

Incidentally, in the case in question – it is not the first time this jewellery shop owner has used his firearm to protect his life. His firearm was never confiscated in the previous incidents and neither, according to my knowledge, has he ever been found guilty of any unlawful acts related to the use of his firearm.

Bungles in the procedure usually occur when people are ignorant of their rights and when you have an incompetent investigating officer (or Station Commander) dealing with the matter. Unfortunately, in the new improved SA, this is often the case.

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