A Mitchells Plain Community Policing Forum (MPCPF) volunteer was shot and wounded as she took a bullet for a child during a gang shooting on Monday night, the forum’s deputy chairperson Ashely Potts has said.
“These guys they just don’t care,” said Potts on Tuesday. “It was two rival gangs shooting at each other in broad daylight.”
Potts said the CPF member and projects coordinator Shakeenah Daniels was well-known for her anti-bail protests outside courts and her contribution to community safety.
She was about to walk some of the neighbourhood’s children home who were returning late on the bus from school extramural activities.
Walking children home is one of several volunteer initiatives to ensure that they are escorted to school and back safely, following a spate of rapes and murdersin the area.
Potts said Daniels and the children had started walking home, and were at the corner of Katdoring and Spine roads, when suddenly shots rang out.
“She managed to shove a kid behind a barrier and the bullet caught her,” he said.
“It was very distressing news.”
‘They all wanted to come and help search for shooters’
Daniels was shot on the ear and was taken to hospital. She was treated and discharged on Tuesday.
None of the children appeared to have been physically injured.
Potts said that, as word spread on Monday night that the stalwart of the CPF had been shot, offers of help flooded in from all thee local and surrounding areas’ volunteer safety groups.
“They all wanted to come and help search for the shooters, to show that we are not going to lay down,” said Potts.
The police’s Anti-Gang Unit (AGU) also sprang into action after the 19:00 shooting and started searching the area, said police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut.
“Detectives assigned to the case pursued every avenue in search of the suspects,” said Traut.
They first arrested a 34-year-old man for alleged possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.
Following up on leads, they eventually arrested a 26-year-old man. He will face an attempted murder charge.
‘Committed crime fighter’
The police will also probe whether the person with the unlicenced firearm was connected to the shooting.
#sapsWC MPlain: Two suspects arrested by detectives from #AntiGangUnit after a Neighbourhood Watch member was shot and wounded in Mitchells Plain. 2 Unlicensed firearms and ammo seized. MEhttps://t.co/pUOWUuDpPn pic.twitter.com/jtYITzRQt6
— SA Police Service (@SAPoliceService) January 29, 2019
Potts commended the police for their swift reaction, saying that the local station commander had made it clear on Monday night that they were going to carry on working through the night to find whoever had shot Daniels.
On hearing the news, Commuty Safety MEC Alan Winde expressed “disgust”.
“I condemn this latest shooting incident, which is believed to be gang related. I would like to wish Ms Daniels a speedy recovery. She is a committed crime fighter in her community.”
Winde commended the MPCPF for their help, and reiterated his appeal to Police Minister Bheki Cele to give the province extra officers, or at least take the province up on its offer of contributing R5m towards police reservists.