Man accused of putting off-duty cop in a coma to spend New Year’s behind bars

A 31-year-old man has appeared in the Polokwane Magistrate’s Court for allegedly putting a police captain in a coma.

Karel Johannes Russow faces charges of attempted murder‚ robbery and crimen injuria after his alleged assault on Captain George Pheme on Monday.

“The captain‚ who is fighting for his life after he was flown to a hospital in Pretoria‚ is said to have lost several teeth during the assault‚” police said earlier this week.

Pheme‚ 56‚ remains in a serious but stable condition‚ police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said on Thursday morning.

The alleged altercation between Russow and Pheme took place near the Mall of the North in Polokwane. It is not clear what the pair may have argued about.

“[Russow] allegedly overpowered [Pheme]‚ grabbed his official firearm and threatened to shoot him. Another passerby managed to grab the firearm from the suspect but he continued assaulting the member until he became unconscious‚” Mojapelo said.

Mojapelo added that police hope that once Pheme recuperates he will be able to enlighten investigators as to what exactly took place.

The captain was not on duty when he was attacked.

Russow will remain behind bars until he returns to court on January 5 to apply for bail. – TMG Digital

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