Durban – Ruthless criminals are now targeting police at home, making off with firearms, uniforms, bulletproof vests and handcuffs, which they’re using to carry out other crimes.
A week after a Chatsworth constable, his pregnant wife and their children were held at gunpoint in their home by five robbers, a Reservoir Hills family suffered a similar fate. Only this time, the five robbers were wearing police uniforms and vests.
The constable, who was stabbed repeatedly during the ordeal last week, said his police issue items had been stolen.
Police have not yet established if the two incidents are related, but they are investigating both robberies, said spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane.
The constable’s wife, who is seven months pregnant, spoke to POST on condition of anonymity as the family are terrified they could be attacked again.
She said the drama unfolded at about 10:30pm last week.
“We had just said goodbye to relatives who came for supper and we locked the driveway gate. My 4-year-old daughter was having a bath, our 61-year-old relative had just gone to bed, and my younger daughter (2) was playing in the lounge.”
She said the door was still open when five men stormed the house. They had guns and were wearing balaclavas.
She said they grabbed her relative from the bedroom and pulled their daughter out of the bath.
“They gave my daughter a towel to cover herself and brought them to the lounge. One accomplice stayed with us the entire time while another made my husband lie down in our passage.”
She said he held a gun to her husband’s head and demanded his firearm, while the other three ransacked the house.
“When he did not disclose where the firearm was they started getting violent and stabbed him in the hand. When he still did not give in, they threatened to stab our daughter.”
Afraid, the constable showed them the safe containing his gun and other police equipment.
“They ransacked the entire house.”
“They took his firearm, bulletproof vest, handcuffs, cash, jewellery and food. We just watched in horror.”
The woman said they loaded everything into the couple’s Mazda 3 and left them in a bedroom.
“A neighbour who saw what was happening contacted the police. My husband broke our window and we shouted for help.”
The constable said this was the second time the family had been robbed. The first time was in Silverglen.
“We moved to this house thinking it was a safer neighbourhood,” he said.
He described the men as callous and said they knew what they wanted.
“I believe they knew I was a police officer and I am certain they had been watching our home. They were organised.”
Meanwhile, the Reservoir Hills family believe that policemen were behind their attack.
Homeowner Karamchand Soorjbully, 61, said he had arrived home with his wife Mala, also 61, and daughter and son-in-law, when they were ambushed.
“I walked into the house and I saw these men holding my daughter and son-in-law at gunpoint. I was confused because they were dressed in police uniforms and had balaclavas on,” he said.
He said all the robbers wanted was guns. When they discovered he didn’t have one, the robbers slapped him across the face and kicked him in the chest.