Cop accused of punching store manager allegedly 'under influence', court hears
The cop famously captured on CCTV assaulting a Pick n Pay store manager was allegedly “under the influence” at the time.
Constable Michael John Sei faced three charges when he appeared in the Boksburg magistrate's court on Friday — assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm, assault with threats, and handling of a firearm under the influence, a contravention of the Firearms Act.
It is still unclear what prompted the incident outside the store in Reiger Park, Ekurhuleni, this week.
The matter was postponed to October 22 for a formal bail application.
According to Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) spokesperson Ndileka Cola, Sei is accused of assaulting the Pick n Pay store manager with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
“The accused has been remanded in custody at the Primrose SAPS police cells.”
The officer was due to appear on Thursday, but the senior public prosecutor gave directives for the common assault charge to be amended to that of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
The footage, which did its rounds on social media on Thursday, shows the manager walking casually outside the premises with what could be a phone to his ear. A man in police uniform swiftly approaches from his left and delivers a sweeping slap to the man's face before laying his arms around the manager's neck.
The man receives another blow which sends him to the floor. He tries to cover his head as he receives more blows. The officer pushes the manager down so he is on his back, swapping hands so he can hold the man down as he delivers more blows to his head.
Another officer joins the scene and restrains the cop. The officer then marches back to the police van shouting and gesticulating as people gather outside the shop.
The whole incident took less than a minute.