Shop client killed in crossfire

Sakhile Mokoena

Sakhile Mokoena

A man enjoying a Coke and a mango at a shop was shot dead in an attempted armed robbery on Friday.

Johannes Gwebu, 70, of Phola location near Hazyview in Mpumalanga, was killed during an exchange of gunfire between the shopkeeper and three armed men.

Gwebu and a young woman were sitting outside the shop when one of the three suspects came to them with a large bag.

He showed them a rifle and ordered them not to move while the other two men went inside the shop.

Inspector Jiyela Sibiya yesterday said: "When the shopkeeper asked if he could help them they simultaneously pulled out firearms and one of them fired and hit the man in his left arm."

When he fell he pulled out his own firearm and there was a fire exchange until the suspects fled empty-handed.

Police said he tried to give chase but the men disappeared into the bushes.

"When he returned he saw the old man lying dead with a bullet wound and a used bullet next to him," Sibiya said.

Gwebu was a regular customer at the shop. The young woman hid behind a car and was not hurt.