Community stops arrest of gang suspect

Manenberg police are appealing to the community to let them do their work after residents prevented them from making an arrest last week.

Police deployed in the area to patrol and gather information on gangs shootings responded when they heard shots being fired in Sabie Road.

As they approached they saw a man holding a firearm while running across the road towards Grieta Court.

According to Manenberg police spokesperson Captain Ian Bennett, the suspect was known to police and he was arrested but was released as the community ganged up on them.

“SAPS members soon found themselves surrounded by the community, saying that SAPS should release the suspect because they’re going to go nowhere. The action of the community in overpowering SAPS members during the execution of their duties has become sad as the community complains that SAPS is never around and that SAPS is never doing enough to combat gang violence, then this happens,” he said.

“The rot of lawlessness has set in the community of Manenberg and will continue if the good people of Manenberg do nothing. This has become a serious violation of the law and amounts to defeating the ends of justice and encourages human rights abuses.

“It is a serious indictment on SAPS and our efforts to combat criminal activity within a gang-infested area like Manenberg. If SAPS and the community don’t join hands in the fight against crime and criminal activities then we could be faced with fighting a losing battle. SAPS Manenberg management is calling on the community to refrain from hampering SAPS in their execution of their duties and to report any persons involved in actions against SAPS,” he added.

On Saturday March 18, and Sunday March 19, three men aged 19, 23 and 33 were arrested during stop and search operations in Manenberg for the possession off three guns and ammunition.

The 19 and 23-year-old were due to appear in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court on Monday March 20 and the 33-year-old on Wednesday March 22.

Anyone with information regarding gangs, drugs and firearms ammunition can Contact Manenberg SAPS 021 699 9400 or Crime Stop on 08600 10111.