Central Cape Town was left looking like a scene from a Hollywood thriller earlier, as a botched robbery put the city on lockdown.
Thankfully, no injuries or fatalities have been reported. Incredibly, it has been confirmed by police that the suspects managed to flee the store with just one item: A cellphone.
Yes folks, that really was what all the commotion was about. Can you believe it? This is what we’ve been told by police spokesperson Noloyiso Rwexana:
“Cape Town police are investigating circumstances surrounding a business robbery at a second-hand goods store on the corner of Strand and Loop Streets at 11.47am.”
“According to available information, two suspects entered the premises, threatened employees with a firearm and a knife and ordered them to go to the back of the store. The suspects fled the scene with a cellphone. No injuries were reported. The investigation continues.”
The early information: How the hostage panic began, and ended…
. The two thieves in possession of a loaded firearm entered the Cash Crusaders store on the corner of Strand and Long Street. Police, CCID, SAPS, fire crews and paramedics were onto the situation in a flash and managed to cordon off the area from the public.
. Plumes of smoke emanated from the building, but fire crews managed to improvise a way to quell the minor blaze by using fans.
. The area was eventually cleared just before 1 pm, as firefighters and specialised security forces gained access to the store shortly afterwards.
1) Onlookers were perplexed as smoke and fire billowed out of the building:
Smoke/Dust coming from Cash Crusaders. Dog unit have already entered the store. pic.twitter.com/FfZNI6G1dU
— James de Villiers (@pejames) July 5, 2017
2) Police initially believed the robbers were still inside, fearing a hostage situation:
— Chantall Presence (@ChazPrez) July 5, 2017
3) Dramatic footage showed the moment that those inside were able to escape with the help of the police, signalling an end to the situation:
Footage of hostages being released at Cash Crusaders Robbery in Cape Town CBD. Suspects were apprehended. ? Jolandi M pic.twitter.com/dDRaUEbr5Q
— Brandon Booysen (@Boyas112) July 5, 2017
Despite the situation becoming more of a storm in a teacup, the response by the emergency services was outstanding. From their prompt arrival at the scene to their management of the situation, they proved themselves to be heroes once more.