Image via: SAPS
Image via: SAPS
Three armed robbers were killed in a brutal shootout with police in Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal on Tuesday night. Acting Provincial Commissioner for KwaZulu-Natal Major General Thulani Gonya has since commended police officers from the K9 Unit for their bravery.
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“These thugs were armed to the teeth and the fact that they had traditional muthi with them made them believe that they were invincible. This once again highlights the dedication of our police officers to bring criminals to book. We wish the injured police officer a speedy recovery,” he said.
On Tuesday night, police officers from the Provincial K9 Unit were following up on intelligence about a white Ford Ranger that was involved in a spate of armed robberies in the greater Durban area.
At 19:00, they spotted the vehicle in Pinetown and attempted to pull it over. The suspects tried to flee while shooting at the police officers. Police then gave chase and the suspects eventually lost control of their vehicle and crashed into a garage on Josiah Gumede Road.
“Six suspects got out of the vehicle and engaged in a gun battle with the police officers and officials from a security company who also responded. One police officer was injured when he was struck on his arm and chest. He was transported to a local hospital where he remains in a stable condition,” said Brigadier Jay Naicker.
During the shootout, three suspects were fatally wounded while a fourth suspect was injured and taken to hospital.
According to Naicker, two suspects managed to flee the scene in Pinetown, however, a manhunt for them is still continuing. Four firearms were seized from the crime scene and police found a number of items of traditional medicine in the vehicle as well as a two-way radio and other implements used by the gang to commit robberies.
“Police in Pinetown are investigating cases of attempted murder, unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition as well as inquest. Detectives are convinced that this gang will be linked to a number of recent robberies in the greater Durban area,” said Naicker.