Eastern Cape police are searching for house robbery suspects who reportedly bit the fingers of a 90-year-old woman in Port Elizabeth to try to get her rings.
One of the robbers had a sword.
Police spokesperson Colonel Pricilla Naidu said the elderly woman heard her dog barking at their home in Martin Street, Charlo, at around 1.30am on Saturday.
“She woke up [and] noticed the garage door was open. As she opened the kitchen door to go out to close the garage door, she was accosted by an unknown male who pushed her into the house. He was armed with a sword. Another two males entered.”
Naidu said a 64-year-old man, who also lived there, then went outside. But he was also threatened and shoved back into the room.
The men demanded money. One suspect attempted to bite the rings from the 90-year-old woman, but was unsuccessful.
The woman’s arm and fingers were injured.
She said the men took a small amount of money from a wallet, clothing, a television, two cellphones, a safe containing a .38 special revolver and the woman’s grey Chevrolet Spark.
“The suspects tied up the complainant and his mother with electrical cords and left them in the room.”
Naidu said the car was later recovered in Prospect Road.
In an unrelated incident in the early hours of Saturday morning, a 33-year-old man went outside to use the toilet at a house in Sigcawu Street in Walmer when his girlfriend heard a noise at the front door.
“She heard [a noise] and someone shouting to open the door. When she opened the door, three men entered and asked for the complainant, the 33-year-old man. When she told them that he was not there, they took two cellphones and some money from the bedroom and left. The suspects fired some shots outside.”
Naidu said that while police were on the scene, a 29-year-old man told them that robbers had used the same modus operandi on him.
“He said the three suspects were at his house and fired shots through his bedroom window. They also demanded that he open the door. As he opened his door, he recognised one of the suspects and they also demanded money from him.”
“He then noticed that the same suspects went to the complainant’s house. The trio task team are investigating two separate cases of house robbery.”
Naidu warned members of the public against opening their doors late at night.
“If they notice something suspicious through their windows rather call the police or alert the neighbours or the security company instead of going outside. Always take notice of a barking dog as they often alert their owners that something is amiss.”
Anyone who can assist police to trace the suspects in both cases can contact Detective Warrant Officer Stephen Bustin on 082 303 0572, Walmer police on 041 509 4006, Crime Stop on 08600 10111 or their nearest police station.
Alternatively, they can use the My SAPS app on their smartphones.
“All information is strictly confidential,” Naidu said.