Durban - A son’s instinctive reaction in grabbing the blade of a knife saved his father from being stabbed by a robber during a home invasion at the weekend.
The son’s palm was cut, but the robber was disarmed.
The family, who did not want to be identified, were attacked in their Sherwood, Durban, home on Saturday morning. The robbers took cash, a wallet and a cellphone before shooting the father in the knee.
The mother said three robbers entered the property through a gate in the back yard. While walking towards the house the intruders noticed two people – the gardener and a relative – in the garage.
She said they held the pair up at gunpoint, tied their hands and legs with cable ties and gagged them.
They then went to the house where the homeowner, 51, was having tea in the dining room. His wife was in the kitchen.
The mother said the men grabbed them, told them to remain silent and forced them into the lounge where they demanded to know where the safe was and if there was anyone else in the house.
The couple replied that their son, 20, was asleep.
She said one of the robbers woke up the son and threatened to kill him with the knife if he screamed.
Two of the robbers took the terrified family to the main bedroom and demanded they hand over cash and valuables. The father handed over an undisclosed amount of cash to one of the men, who then demanded more money and threatened to shoot him.
The father went to another cupboard and while he was trying to hand over more cash the robber began shooting.
The father retrieved his firearm from the cupboard and returned fire, the mother said.
The robber then jumped onto the father and they both fell to the ground.
When the second suspect left his post of guarding the mother and son to help his accomplice, the mother crawled out the room and ran to alert neighbours.
As she did, the son crept up behind the robbers and grabbed the blade of the knife one of them was carrying, overpowering the man and throwing him into the corner of the room. The gunman panicked and ran out of the room followed by the knifeman.
“The incident happened quickly. I was shocked. I heard the gun go off and I did not know my father was shot,” the son said.
“Instinct kicked in and I reacted when I saw the second man walk towards my father with the knife.
“We are still in shock. It will take some time to realise what happened. We gave them what little money we had but still they wanted more.”
The father underwent an operation on Subday to remove the bullet from below his knee. The bullet had shattered his bone.
His son received stitches to his right palm and both men are recovering in hospital.
Police spokesman, Captain Thulani Zwane, confirmed the incident, saying a man had been taken in for questioning in connection with the robbery.