Man shoots five in tavern

Rejected policeman in apparent suicide

DRAMATIC SCENE: Staff at Jeff’s Tavern in Whittlesea where a police officer shot five people on Saturday night, are still in shock over the incident with, from left, Tebogo Masenyane, Vuyolwethu Sopapaza , Tsepo Makakole and Asiphiwe Thwalingca Picture: BHONGO JACOB

‘The woman said she wanted nothing more to do with him, he must leave her alone’

BHONGO JACOBA POLICE officer is believed to have committed suicide shortly after he allegedly shot and injured five people at a Whittlesea tavern on Saturday evening.

The officer, who has not been named, was apparently angry with a woman with whom he was in a relationship.A worker at Jeff’s Tavern, Vuyolwethu Sopapaza, said the two quarrelled outside the bar before the incident.“They fought and the woman overpowered him. He fell to the ground and she shouted that she did not want to be with him anymore.”

She said the man did not reply and the woman picked up an empty beer bottle.“We stopped her before she could hit him and she said she wanted nothing to do with him.”

Sopaza said the officer then left with his silver-grey Toyota Avanza, but arrived back at the tavern 15 minutes later.Tsepo Makakole, who also works at the tavern, said the policeman went in and found the woman having drinks with another man.

“He then shot the woman. He did not say anything, he just walked in and started shooting.”He said several gunshots were fired before patrons started running out.

He said there were less than 20 people inside at the time. A man broke his arm and leg while trying to jump over the wall outside the tavern.“After that, he got in his car and left. We called the ambulance to fetch the people who had been shot.”

DJ Asiphiwe Thwalingca said the woman and the policeman were seen together a couple of times before the incident.“He was a quiet guy, even on that night.”

Police spokeswoman Captain Namhla Mdleleni said the police had opened an inquest. She said the injured were taken to various hospitals and the body of the policeman was found in his vehicle near the Oxkraal Dam with a bullet wound on Sunday.“Five people were shot by the officer, including a colleague he had worked with on Saturday night.”


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