Bring cop to book - family of slain wife

Samantha Mathane
Samantha Mathane

The family of an Alexandra woman who was shot and killed by a police officer wants him to be arrested.

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) yesterday confirmed that Samantha Mathane was shot by a cop during a shootout with suspected hijackers last month.

Ipid said it was able to link to the firearm used when Mathane was hit by a stray bullet to a police officer.

Ipid spokesperson Sontaga Seisa told Sowetan that they received a report indicating that the firearm that was used during the shooting belonged to the police officer.

"We indeed received the report with regard to the identification of the firearm that it belonged to a police official. However, at this stage the name of the police official cannot be published. Our investigation is ongoing," Seisa said.

Mathane was shot several metres away from her home after she had gotten off a taxi, returning from work.

The shooting enraged the community, who marched to the Alexandra police station yesterday hoisting placards that read #Justice4Samantha.

Mathane was killed just a month after she got married.

Mathane's husband, Albert Radebe, yesterday said he was relieved that their suspicions had been confirmed that a police officer was behind the shooting.

"We always knew that it was that police officer who shot her. Anyone who was there saw that he was responsible for her death," Radebe said.

He said the family was informed about the ballistic report two weeks ago, but were told to keep it under wraps to maintain the investigation's integrity.

"They told us that the police are refusing to give them [Ipid] a statement and that the police service has referred them to their lawyers.

"What makes me angry is that the same cop who shot her has not been suspended or arrested, he still has a gun, he is still getting his salary, and he is still running around the streets and terrorising the community," Radebe said.

"I have lost my wife and my children have lost their mother. Minister [Bheki] Cele lied to us because it does not seem like this matter is a priority," Radebe said.

He said that investigating officer in the matter was experiencing a number of hurdles in his investigations, which made it difficult for the family to get closure on the matter.

"If this was a priority matter, then things wouldn't take this long. We hope that the officer will be arrested and charged soon, so we can move on with our lives and get closure on why he shot at innocent people for no reason," he said.

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