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Boys accused of shoplifting forced to slap each other

By Sibongile Mashaba | Dec 01, 2011 | COMMENTS [ 331 ]

FOUR young boys meted out punishment to themselves by slapping each other after they were allegedly caught stealing chocolates at a leading chainstore .

The boys, aged between eight and 12 years, were taken by a security guard to a back room at Maake Plaza's Shoprite at Rita, near Lenyenye in Limpopo.

They were first scolded and then ordered to slap each other. The ordeal is said to have lasted about two hours.

The children took turns in slapping each other, while staff watched, laughed and made "silly" remarks.

In heart-wrenching video footage taken on November 20, the four young friends are seen in a room with a table and chairs. A boy in a white sweater is standing while a security guard uncuffs him.

The guard is talking to the boy. The boy shakes his head as though he is disagreeing with the guard.

Moments later, the boy walks towards his friends and starts to assault a friend in a black shirt by slapping him. Then the boy screams in pain.

The boy in the white sweater moves to slap his other friend in a grey sweater and red vest.

In the background, a man is heard saying in Tsonga: "Tell them to stop stealing ..."

The guard is seen holding one of the boy's hands while his friend slaps him.

The man further says: "They will come back for you. You are not doing anything ..."

This could be interpreted as that the boy hitting the other one was not hitting him hard enough. A female staffer is seen handing a facial towel to one of the boys who is crying uncontrollably.

An employee said the stolen chocolates could not have cost more than R30. "The security guard is the one who ordered them to slap each other. It is wrong. It is definitely abuse," said the employee.

Shoprite spokeswoman Sarita van Wyk has confirmed the incident and said they would take action against those involved.

Van Wyk said three contracted security personnel from two independent companies were involved.

They had acted against the company policy that states that any occurrence of detention on suspicion of shoplifting must be reported to the branch manager to take charge of the situation.

"At no time was it reported to any member of store management that three minors were apprehended."

Van Wyk said any staff member who had looked on during the incident would also be suspended pending the investigation.

"While it was not in its power to stop the incident due to a lack of knowledge, the Shoprite Group would like to demonstrate its goodwill towards the boys by inviting their parents or carers to make contact with the branch manager to assist with counselling," Van Wyk said.

In other cases of somewhat intriguing, traumatic forms of punishment:

  • Ten-year-old Sakhile Mhlanga was covered in white paint by a gang of children after an argument over a box of marbles at a primary school in the small town of Ngodwana, in Mpumalanga;
  • Moses Mkosi, 22, who had his entire body painted silver in July last year after being accused of trespassing. He was assaulted by a farmer, Frederick de Beer, while a farmhand held him down and sprayed him with a can of silver paint - as a result he suffered kidney problems and skin complaints from the attack;
  • Fourteen-year-old Lorraine Nesane's face and body were painted white by a shopkeeper who accused her of stealing a pair of trousers from a clothes shop in Makhado town, Limpopo.

COMMENTS [ 331 ]

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I can’t believe what I am reading here, I am all for the concept of community discipline but this is madness.

1. Assault is a crime; by forcing these kids to beat each other up he is forcing them to commit a crime and therefore can be criminally charged.

2. As an employee of Shoprite or third party service providers who are on the premises of Shoprite he is opening Shoprite up to litigation, the parents can actually institute civil action against his employers being the security company and Shoprite who are ultimately accountable for his conduct.

3. Then there is an issue and ethic.al issue of forcing young kids who are friends to beat up each other stoking fires that may burn long after his misguided actions.

Whilst it is true that it is the African way to have adults maintain discipline but we are talking about young kids who are not necessarily thieves. These are young kids going through a stage and certainly there is a degree of peer pressure involved. What you need to do in this case is guide these kids, call their parents and even force the parents to pay an equivalent of the goods stolen and then let the parents decide how best to handle this situation. Can you imagine a storm that would have brewed had these kids been white and a black security guard were to force them to hit each other?

Had this been my kid there would be hell to pay not because they have been “punished” but because there are limits to what is acceptable behaviour; this is beyond reasonable and borders on retarded behaviour from an adult who probably did this for his own amusement and in the process he has overstepped his authority. My question is would he have still ordered these kids to beat each other up with all their parents present, if the answer is no then there is something seriously wrong with this picture.

Dec 01, 2011 12:18 | 0 replies

waar is die naai @__GoatSperm nou?

Dec 01, 2011 12:41 | 0 replies

eKapa
Luv2kiss
My gf tested negative, does that mean i'm negative ( we do it skin to skin every night),
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
yes you are, but if she tested positive, yhi ndaba yakhe leyo

~~~~~~~~~~~

Those are yo woman's results baba, if u want to know about u go test, Indirect testing doesn't work *hiding*

Dec 01, 2011 12:41 | 0 replies

@Sentle o bua ka eng?kikikikikikikikiki

Dec 01, 2011 12:43 | 0 replies

@TAKESHY- thank very much

Dec 01, 2011 12:43 | 0 replies

@nevus
@Sentle o bua ka eng?kikikikikikikikiki
============================
Yes wena sebono moya!!!!!

Kakkakakkakakkakakkakakkakakka

Dec 01, 2011 12:49 | 0 replies

@ eKapa

Here I am... Now, If I had known, that this was your case then I would have never read your post. It would've been like parking a trolley in a handicap space. I wish you all the best of luck in the social struggles that seem to be placing such a demand on you.... *Laughing @ this laaitie*

@ eKapa

TSEK!!!!

Dec 01, 2011 12:50 | 0 replies

"The children took turns in slapping each other, while staff watched, laughed and made "silly" remarks."

Violence breeds more violence, 10 years from now those boys will be carrying guns and non should be suprised when our young black men continue on this criminal culture. Our jails are filled with young black men whom at some point went through corporal punishment, us as black community we are failing to find proper dicipline for our boys and guird them, our jails will always be packed with young black men as we fail to bring up the boy child in the black community.

Dec 01, 2011 12:52 | 0 replies

@ Katakata..D!CK-HEAD

Go on.... Tell them everything you know... Even though it'll take 10 seconds............ Dumb-@ss

Dec 01, 2011 12:52 | 0 replies

@__GoatSperm wena Khumbule'khaya helped you to find ur Father in the Farms of Lusikisiki busy bonking other Goats.

Dec 01, 2011 12:36 | 0 replies

@__GoatSperm
@ WordofGod

You're so narrow minded, your earings knock together when you walk.. Try another landline...
===================================================================
Not this lady you bagabaga!

Dec 01, 2011 12:35 | 0 replies