Cape Town: 5 South African Police Service (SAPS) officers and a soldier were killed when an armed gang stormed into a rural police station in South Africa in the wee hours of Wednesday near Queenstown. As per the SAPS sources, an unknown heavily armed gang forcefully entered the Ngcobo Police Station and without warning, randomly opened fire on the police officers on duty.
It also informed that the gang stole a police van during their gateway. 3 officers were killed instantly in the Community Service Centre. An off-duty soldier was shot dead as the suspects were fleeing. Tragically, 2 officers were in the vehicle and they were eventually killed too.
In this regard, the police spokesperson Vish Naidoo said, “During the early hours of this morning 6 people were killed when robbers attacked Ngcobo police station.”
Reportedly, authorities had shocked following the brutal nature of the crime. General Khehla John Sitole by condemning the attack, vowed not to rest until they are made to face justice. He said, “I am appalled and deeply saddened by the cold and callous attack on our colleagues this morning. I’ve activated a task team comprising of experienced detectives of the South African Police Service and the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation to investigate this attack. We will not rest until we have tracked down these heartless killers and bring them to book.”
A massive manhunt operation had been launched to track down the perpetrators. Airwing and high-risk task forces had also been added to the operation. SAPS reported that the gang had also robbed a nearby ATM before the police station attack. They stole the guns of the deceased security officers during the ambush. However, police had not established a motive for the crime.
Meanwhile, attacks on police are common in South Africa and has one of the highest crime rates among the world. As per the latest crime statistics, at least 57 police officers were killed in the line of duty in 12 months between April 2016 and March 2017.