Two men were shot and killed by police officers during a shoot-out in KwaZulu Natal, police said on Wednesday.
Police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane said the incident occurred on Tuesday after officers were alerted to a robbery in Umkomaas.
“It is alleged the complainant was on his business premises when he was approached by three armed suspects. At gunpoint they took cash, airtime vouchers and a cellphone before fleeing the crime scene in a silver VW Polo.”
Zwane said the officers spotted the vehicle involved in the robbery, and when the suspects noticed them they opened fire.
“A chase ensued and the VW Polo came to a standstill under the N2 bridge. The suspects alighted and started running while firing in the direction of the members.”
He said the officers returned fire at the suspects, fatally wounding two of the three men.
“The third suspect managed to flee the crime scene on foot. The stolen items and two unlicensed firearms with 24 live rounds of ammunitions were recovered from the deceased suspects,” Zwane said.
Charges of armed robbery, possession of suspected stolen property, attempted murder and an inquest were opened at Umkomaas police station for further investigation, while preliminary investigations revealed that the vehicle was stolen from the Berea area in 2015.
“The speedy response of our police officers, which ensured that the stolen property as well as unlicensed firearms was recovered, is commended.
“The remaining suspect who managed to flee the scene will be apprehended soon. Our police officials will always defend themselves when they come under fire,” said the KwaZulu-Natal acting provincial commissioner, Major General Bheki Langa.