A policeman was shot dead on Monday and another wounded, while others were robbed of their service firearms during a robbery at a filling station in KwaMhlanga, Mpumalanga, police said.
Provincial police spokesman Brigadier Leonard Hlathi said a group of 10 armed men allegedly broke the main door and stormed into the filling station in the early hours of the morning. He said the robbers forced the customers and employees of the filling station into the staff room, where they held them hostage and fired shots randomly.
“They then ordered the cashier to hand over all the cash and forcefully tried to open the [cash] safe inside the shop, but failed,” said Hlathi.
“While they were inside, police arrived and a shootout ensued between the criminals and the police that led to the death of a police captain. The criminals fled the scene in a blue Volkswagen Golf with an undisclosed amount of cash, two pistols and a rifle that they robbed the [South African Police Service] members of. The wounded police constable was rushed a hospital where he is in a stable condition.”
Cases of business robbery, murder, attempted murder and other related cases were opened for investigation, added Hlathi.
Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Mondli Zuma condemned the incident. “Killing a police member is also an attack on the State and undermining the Constitution of the country.”