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Protea man allegedly dies at the hands of police over alcohol

A police officer from Protea Glen is accused of fatally shooting a 54-year-old man over allegations of illegal sale of alcohol.

Residents of Protea South Zone Seven are fuming following the death of Simon Maluleke, allegedly at the hands of the police.

Maluleke (54) was shot in the head and died instantly in his house on Sunday afternoon allegedly by a police officer stationed at the Protea Glen Police Station.

 

In their tiny living room with a blood-soaked blanket still on the floor and blood stains spattered on the fridge, his daughter Nhlamulo Maluleke, recounted the tragic events that led to the death of her father in front of her.

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“My dad had just come back from Limpopo, it had been two hours since he had returned then police officers came and said they wanted to search our place, they heard that we are selling alcohol,” said a visibly shaken Nhlamulo.

“The alcohol that was there was for my brother to drink; two cases and two bottles of beer that were already in the fridge.”

Nhlamulo went on to explain that the two police officers were allowed by her father to enter and search the house while she was taking a bath in another room.

“At home, we have two fridges, the one in the kitchen and the other in my room. They first searched the one in the kitchen and found the two bottles of alcohol and then demanded to also search the one that’s in my room,” she explained.

She asked for a moment to finish bathing and get dressed so she could open for them to search the other room.

While still in her room, Nhlamulo claims to have heard one of the police officers asking his father why he was being arrogant.

Angry residents have allegedly torched this police vehicle.

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“My dad then suggested that they call the person who left the two alcohol cases in the house which is my brother but they insisted on rather taking my dad to the police station and he was refusing.

“I went out and asked one of the officers what would happen should I be the one to go with them to the police station.

“I further asked if they won’t take my fingerprints and they said no but I would just have to pay an amount of R500 since they found alcohol in the house and I agreed and started preparing to leave with them.”

While Nhlamulo was preparing to leave to pay the fine, the situation escalated between one of the officers and her father.

“My dad stepped out of the house to call my brother to come back home.

“One of the police officers followed him and started spraying him with pepper spray on the face.

Angry residents of Protea Sout are calling for justice after one of their own was killed allegedly by a police officer.

“He then ran to our neighbour’s tap to wash his face then returned to the house and went straight to his room.”

The police allegedly followed him to the house continuously accusing him of being arrogant. Simon kept telling the police officer that he was not selling alcohol and they should leave him alone.

When Nhlamulo was almost done getting ready, she heard gunfire coming from the living room and the neighbour calling her father’s name.

“I immediately rushed out of my room and the police officer who shot my dad ran and stood outside.

“Fortunately, the community members had already heard me shouting for help and were ready to attack so he couldn’t flee from the scene. Another police van arrived and escorted the police officer away from angry residents.”

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Another witness, a community member who was at the scene, said he saw the police officer chasing Simon around his yard and spraying him with pepper spray.

“While I was still shocked by that, he ran into his house and the police officer followed him. I don’t know what happened inside the house but I heard gunfire,” the eye witness said who did not want to be named.

After Simon was shot, angry residents went on a rampage and set the police van on fire. More police backup arrived to restore calm as the situation had escalated into a violent protest.

“I am deeply saddened by what happened, there must be justice because my dad was innocent, he was not selling alcohol, he died because he refused to go with them to the police station,” Said Nhlamulo.

“Even though I had agreed with the police officer that I would go with them to the station and my brother would come with the R500 that was required, they still forced me to leave with my dad.”

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate confirmed that it had dispatched its investigator to the scene on Sunday and has launched an investigation into the matter.

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