A Kewtown nurse and her son have pressed charges against a police officer they accuse of assaulting them.
Veronica Franciscus says she was in her kitchen on Friday June 8, when she heard her son, Kyle, 31, shouting for her, just after 10pm, saying the police were there.
“I walked towards the garage side of our property, through the backyard, and as I took the turn, I saw Kyle and the police officer. They were on our property. I asked what was happening and was told the officer wants to search him.
“In the meantime, our dog, which is a pit bull, came out. The police officer asked me to take the dog inside the house. I told him I am also a public servant – that is all I said.”
She claims that when she went outside the gate to pick up her son’s jacket, the officer pushed her and she fell on her back.
“He then called for back-up and four police vehicles pulled up here.”
In the meantime, Ms Franciscus says, the dog had got out the house again, and as Kyle tried to get it back inside, the officer fired a shot at it, but the bullet missed the dog and hit another police officer in the leg.
Ms Franciscus claims when she went inside the house to make a phone call, the police officer followed her and then choked and slapped her.
She claims he also broke down their front door’s security gate, as it was locked, because they used the side entrance through the garage.
“I did not tell him he cannot search Kyle, or tell Kyle to run away. The way they speak to you, it’s like you are nothing. He threw me in the van like a bag of potatoes.”
Kyle says he ran into the house to wash his face, as the policeman used pepper spray on him twice.
“I had a pocket knife on me and showed it to the policeman. Our dog did not charge anyone, and we did not set the dog on them.”
The family’s attorney, Leon Fielies, says Ms Franciscus and Kyle have each been charged with assault, obstructing the course of justice and resisting arrest. Both are out on R500 bail each.
Mother and son, he adds, have lodged a complaint at the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID).
According to Athlone police spokeswoman Sergeant Zita Norman, a case has been opened and is being investigated by Ipid, and disciplinary procedures are being taken against the police officer.