Minister Fritz commends work of LEAP Officers, suspect arrested
Today, the Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, commends the work of LEAP officers involved in a shootout with four suspects while on patrol in Philippi on Thursday, 12 August 2021. One suspect was arrested, an illegal firearm was confiscated and a vehicle which is suspected to have been stolen has been impounded.
At around 15:10, while on patrol, officers spotted a Volkswagen Polo with four male occupants speeding on Govan Mbeki Drive towards Duinefontein Road. Officers took chase and were able to stop the vehicle on the corners of Govan Mbeki and Duinefontein Road, but as soon as the vehicle came to a standstill, two of the occupants jumped out of the vehicle, and the driver of the vehicle sped off towards Samora Machel. Officers pursued the vehicle and during the chase, suspects fired shots at the officers. The suspects’ vehicle eventually came to a standstill in an informal settlement, when both suspects jumped out and fled the scene. The officers managed to apprehend and detain one of the suspects.
Minister Fritz said, “I think we must acknowledge first and foremost that while the officers gave chase, the suspects started shooting at them. Now even though the officers are trained to handle these situations, we must remember that in that moment, their lives are in great danger. Criminals are shooting at them. And so I want to thank them for pursuing these criminals relentlessly, for not giving up and for apprehending one of the suspects.”
Minister Fritz continued, “I am advised that a case has been opened at Samora Machel Police Station for possession of an illegal firearm and ammunition, reckless driving, possession of a suspected stolen vehicle and attempted murder. These are serious charges, and I call on the Samora Machel SAPS to do everything in their power to investigate this case, find the other three suspects and bring them all to book.”
Minister Fritz concluded, “the important thing about these cases is that all four of these guys, and all other would-be criminals who hear about this story, will think twice before they commit their acts of criminality in the future. These successes by our LEAP officers, and there are many, are a deterrent to would-be criminals. And that is progress in our goal of making this Province safer for all our citizens. And so I want to thank our LEAP officers for the work they do to keep our communities safe.”
Anyone who witnesses any criminal acts, or who has any other information that will assist SAPS in making arrests, are urged to telephone the SAPS Command Centre at 021 466 0011.