Cops attacked for trying to stop mob
Cape Times - Police were stoned when they tried to rescue a Grade 10 pupil who was attacked and set alight during a mob justice incident in Khayelitsha on Monday night.
“Last night around 9pm, Lingelethu West police responded to a report of a community protest at Hlomela Street in Town Two. Upon their arrival on the scene, the members were stoned by a group of about 200 people,” police spokesman FC Van Wyk said.
The police noticed a male victim lying on the ground with his hands tied behind his back, bleeding from his face and a burning tyre around his upper body. The members managed to disperse the crowd, but the victim died at the scene, Van Wyk said.
He said no one had been arrested. The deceased man was identified as 19-year-old Lisolomzi Mdingi.
Mdingi’s family told the Cape Times on Tuesday that he had been caught by the crowd at his home after he had tried to escape through the window. His family said they had seen Mdingi stabbing several people on Sunday.
“He went out with his friends on Sunday and he came back with several stab wounds later that day. He just came and took a knife. I never saw him like that before. You could see he had been smoking drugs. We were afraid to ask him what was wrong. He just said he wanted to fight,” Mdingi’s sister Siyolise Maqam said.
She said the attack on her brother had been planned at a community meeting where only men had been allowed.
“No women were allowed. Some residents who were women say they were sjambokked after they tried to attend the meeting. The meeting was called by community leaders. It was after this meeting that they came to our house.
“He was sitting in the lounge, watching TV. They kicked the door and he tried to escape, but they caught him. They started assaulting him. Some of them wanted to set our house alight because they say we were hiding a thug,” Maqam said.
She said they had called the police to intervene, but police officers did not arrive in time.
“We tried to get the police to arrest him because we thought he was going to be safe in custody, but we were told there was no case opened against him,” she said.
My brother had been causing problems and we tried to talk to him, but he would not listen to us,” Maqam said.