Man shot over frying pan

19 August 2019 | Police

Two attempted murder cases were opened during the second phase of Operation Kalahari Desert over the weekend in the Erongo Region, with one involving a soldier that shot a suspected thief in the back.

According to Deputy Commissioner Tobie Gerber, the first incident happened at Mondesa in Swakopmund on Saturday afternoon at around lunchtime.

“A 32-year-old man allegedly stole a frying pan from a 40-year-old man in the Meduletu area of Mondesa. A chase ensued and the owner of the frying pan managed to catch the alleged thief, who drew a knife with the intent to stab the owner of the pan.

“The owner allegedly took out his pistol and shot the alleged thief once in the head. The frying pan and as well as the knife were found with the victim,” Gerber said.

He was taken to the Swakopmund state hospital in a critical condition and was later transferred to the Katutura state hospital for further medical treatment.

The owner of the frying pan was arrested and his weapon confiscated. He is expected to appear in the Swakopmund Magistrate's Court today.

Soldier shoots suspect

The second incident occurred in Kuisebmond during the early hours of Saturday morning.

“Members of the police and defence force came across two men grabbing a wallet from another man during a patrol in a shopping centre area. The officers then chased the suspects, who fled the scene.

“During the process, a member of the Namibian Defence Force (NDF) fired three warning shots in the air, and demanded that the suspects stop running, which they didn't. He fired a fourth shot which struck one of the suspects in the back. He was taken to the Katutura state hospital in Windhoek, where he currently is in a stable condition,” Gerber said.

The other suspect managed to escape and hasn't been found. The victim was robbed of his wallet, which contained N$300. The money was not recovered.

A case of robbery was opened against the suspect, who is allegedly a habitual criminal, and a case of attempted murder was opened against the soldier.

The docket will be forwarded to the prosecutor-general's office for a decision. The soldier has not been arrested but his weapon has been confiscated.

At a media briefing on Sunday, Gerber said the general behavior of the public is commendable. “We have observed a significant reduction in the number of dangerous weapons carried by persons during stop-and-search operations.”

Over the course of the operation thus far, two illegal shebeens were closed in Kuisebmond. Six illegal immigrants were also detained, one drunk driving case was registered and 18 dangerous weapons were seized.

Fines to the value of N$33 000 were issued to drivers for violating the rules of the road, while N$20 000 in fines were issued to those selling liquor illegally.

The operation was launched in Windhoek on 12 August and this past Thursday in the Erongo Region. Members of the police force, army, navy, air force, correctional services, local authority traffic departments and community structures form part of the operation.

Leandrea Louw

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