Friend's account deepens mystery around DJ's 'suicide by hanging'
Friends and family of a young Alexandra DJ are in disbelieve after the young man was arrested by police on suspected drunk driving, and an hour later he was found allegedly “hanging himself using shoelaces”.
Jabu Fritz, 26, was involved in an accident in Bramley, Johannesburg, on Thursday morning while driving his friend’s BMW 5 series.
The owner of the car Sifelane Phiri told Sowetan on Monday that he had just checked in at a motel in Bramley when police arrived to see him together with Fritz.
“He immediately told me that an accident had happened. I asked him (Jabu) did you have another accident on a Dibala [the nickname of the car]. I asked him like that because he has had two other accidents driving the same car,” said Phiri.
Phiri then joined Jabu in the police van and headed to the accident scene on 10th Road in Bramely, not far from the motel.
“When we arrived at the scene I found my car and it was damaged on the right side at the back. The other car was being towed from the scene. Police did not want to even take a statement from me. The two officers then told me they were taking Jabu in and said to me I would find them at the Alexandra police station,” Phiri said.
He said just as the police indicated they were leaving, another vehicle arrived with four people. One of the occupants allegedly got out and began taking pictures of his car.
“When I asked him why he is taking pictures, he slapped me in the face. I punched back.”
Fortunately, Phiri added, as he was fighting the guys a neighbour who knows him stopped to inquire as he could identify his vehicle. As he stopped, the owner of the other vehicle which was involved in the accident alerted the four men, who identified themselves as local security guards, that they were beating up the wrong person and they stopped.
The four men then drove off. Phiri then found a towing company to take his car to a safe place. He then went back to the motel and later on police arrived.
“They came carrying Jabu’s jersey. They told me that he hanged himself in the van using shoe laces. I asked to go and see him but they refused saying they want next of kin,” said Phiri.
Fritz was later positively identified by his aunt Dorothy Ndlovu early afternoon the same day.
“The cops must tell the truth about what happened. How can a man hang himself inside a police van,” Phiri asked.