A 46-year-old man accused of fatally shooting teenager Spencer Tshukudu in Blydeville on Thursday appeared in the Lichtenburg Magistrates’ Court, where he was granted R20 000 bail.
Magistrate Motlhopa Diale said it was in the interest of justice to release Jaco du Plooy of Rietfontein farm on bail.
“The applicant has a clean criminal record, he is a businessman, and is not a flight risk. He had handed his passport to the investigating officer,” said Diale before granting Du Plooy bail.
Du Plooy is accused of shooting 15-year-old Tshukudu, on October 10, during a protest against poor service delivery. Two others were injured in the shooting.
The accused’s version was that he was attacked by a group of eight people and he fired several shots to defend himself and his employees.
However, the State contends that Du Plooy was not attacked. He allegedly shot at the teenager and his friends while they were directing traffic away from barricaded roads.
Investigating officer Captain Ratati Monyai told the court Tshukudu was shot between the eyes.
After granting the accused bail, the magistrate postponed the case to November 30 for investigation.
Outside the court the situation was tense.
Police had to separate a group of farmers dressed in khaki shirts and protesting residents of Blydeville.
Insults were traded between the two groups as they left the court. A farmer challenged a teenager to face him alone after the boy wagged a finger and shouted that farmers were murderers.
“You are strong among the crowd, come to me alone I will show,” the farmer said.
Eventually, the police escorted most of the Blydeville residents away from the court precinct, while farmers remained behind.
However. police had to intervene again when the farmers were leaving the court area. One of the farmers was seen brandishing a firearm before he charged towards a group of Blydeville residents. Instead of running away, the residents picked up stones.
Police on horseback quickly separated the two groups. Above, a police helicopter monitored the situation.
Shops near the court remained closed.