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Beggar dies in tragic accident involving JMPD

A homeless man begging on the street was struck and killed in an accident involving a metro police vehicle.

A homeless man was hit and killed while begging for money at the intersection of Witkoppen and Leslie roads on April 30.

According to another beggar who wished to remain anonymous, and witnessed the tragic incident, a JMPD vehicle was speed-chasing another car for seemingly not being compliant with their rules when it ran into the homeless guy at the intersection.

Read more: JMPD warns residents about bogus police

“It was so traumatic. I cannot even get the image of his body out of my mind to date, as you can see, his blood is still there. He was a good guy who was in his late 20s. I decided to knock off and go home to Diepsloot shortly after the metro police came through in large numbers. I do not know what happened after.”

The blood stains on the road.
The blood stains on the road.

Bryce van Zyl, a principal dealer at heyhalfway car dealership located at the intersection, said they quickly ran out to see what was happening after they had heard a commotion outside.

“We saw a person that was seemingly driven over by the metro police vehicle and lying in a pool of blood on the road, his body was twisted. I have never seen him before because it is usually the black guys who directs traffic when the lights are off and he was white.

“People started running towards him and he was then covered with a foil blanket. His body was lying there for probably three hours. I had to go to the East Rand and when I came back it was only then that they started to load his body. But an ambulance was called and it arrived an hour later.

Also read: Beggar could be killed

“We didn’t hear anything further about it. There was no recording anywhere, there was nothing published, and nobody came to ask us for a statement.”

Van Zyl said all he wishes is justice for the young homeless man who died – it is the right thing to do.

“He may have been homeless but he is still a human being. He didn’t deserve to die like that. He must also get the justice he deserves,” said Caroline Gibbs from Lonehill. She came across the scene at around 12:30 on her way to an appointment and passed it again upon her return.

Bryce van Zyl from heyhalfway car dealership.
Bryce van Zyl from heyhalfway car dealership.

“We need to understand what happened to him and see if there are any investigations.”

When reached out for comment, JMPD’s Superintendent Xolani Fihla confirmed it was a JMPD vehicle that knocked and killed the man.

“It’s alleged the pedestrian was crossing the roadway in an unsafe manner from north to south when he was hit by the Toyota Corolla [JMPD vehicle]. The impact of the collision caused the pedestrian to be flung onto the left rear of the BMW 120D. Both male drivers escaped without injuries.

“The pedestrian was pronounced deceased at the scene and his body was transported to Hillbrow Mortuary. A case docket for culpable homicide has been opened at Douglasdale SAPS with case number 8/5/2024. Once a case is opened, it is handed over to the SAPS to investigate and they can shed more light on the progress of the investigation. The accident was not a hit and run, as the proper procedures were followed when reporting and attending to an accident involving a departmental vehicle.”

Related article: Fourways and Lonehill: Hawkers, beggars and bad driving behaviour

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