Arrests following weekend’s mass shooting

Lentegeur Community Police Forum (CPF) is outraged that while politicians are debating the allocation of police resources, a mother died after being shot and seven youth were injured, including a 5-year-old girl, in a drive-by shooting in Montclair at the weekend.

In a separate incident, the body of an 18-year-old woman was found with stab wounds on an open field in Priscilla Street, Montrose Park, hours later.

Last week Police Minister Bheki Cele and DA provincial government members became embroiled in a dispute relating to the distribution of police officers and resources across the country, in particular to the Western Cape (“’Plain pleads with police minister for more resources”, Plainsman, October 13).

Within 72-hours, a police-led activation plan following the mass shooting at a 21st birthday party in Montclair Drive at 8.20pm on Saturday October 16, resulted in the arrest of three men, aged 22, 35 and 38.

SAPS Western Cape spokesman, Colonel André Traut, said the woman and seven others, aged between 5 and 26, were injured when the occupants of a Honda Ballade shot at the party-goers.

The eight victims were admitted to hospital, where the woman, 31, died.

“It is believed to be a gang-related incident,” he said.

Colonel Traut said detectives from SAPS’ Anti-Gang Unit conducted a tracing operation on Sunday October 17 and arrested the men, who are due to appear in Mitchell’s Plain Magistrate’s Court on charges of murder and attempted murder.

Since the shooting Premier Alan Winde and Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz jointly sent out a press release welcoming the arrests.

They met with SAPS provincial commissioner Lieutenant-General Thembisile Patekile on Monday.

Mr Winde said: “We are devastated by the news of this mass shooting. No stone must be left unturned in ensuring that all those responsible are brought to book and end up behind bars. We cannot allow our communities to live in a constant state of fear and to be terrorised by gangsters.”

Mr Fritz said this kind of violence was not normal. “Violence has absolutely no place in our society and I call on the community to come forward and share any information they might have which will result in the successful prosecution of those guilty parties,” he said.

His department will be opening a court watching brief unit to monitor the court processes, to ensure that “this matter is not simply struck off the court roll”.

“But where inefficiencies do appear, they are instead spotted and addressed. We want convictions. We want to make sure people pay for their crimes,” he said.

Lentegeur CPF chairperson, Byron de Villiers, called on the public to come forward with information that can assist the investigation.

Anyone with information can confidentially call Crime Stop on 086 001 0111.

Lentegeur police station spokesperson, Constable Felicia Adams, said the young woman’s body, found in Montrose Park on Sunday October 17 at 12.54am, was full of stab wounds but that the cause of death was yet to be determined.

Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to call Detective-Constable Rubin van Wyk on 021 377 5000.