Hijack victim shoots taxi passenger

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Copy of ND taxi passenger (2) (39232884) INLSA Khetho Gwala was struck in both arms by a stray bullet while seated in a minibus taxi in Pinetown. Picture: Zainul Dawood

Durban - A woman who tried to shoot two hijackers in Pinetown on Monday accidently hit a passenger in a taxi in the next lane.

The woman could face attempted murder charges.

The bullet went through the panel of the taxi and hit Khetho Gwala, 30, in his left arm, exited and struck him on his right arm.

According to police, two men tried to hijack the woman while she was stopped at a red light at the intersection of Anderson and Old Main roads just after 5pm.

Police spokesman, Colonel Jay Naicker, said the woman fired a shot at the hijackers while she was in the car. However, the bullet struck Gwala. The hijackers fled.

Naicker said a case of attempted murder was being investigated, but no arrest had been made. He said the firearm was licensed.

Gwala was on his way from Pinetown to Chatsworth, where he lives with his mother, Rosemary Gwala, and his two children, a 9-year-old son and daughter, 8.

Speaking to the Daily News on Monday before he was admitted to RK Khan Hospital, Gwala, a painter, said on Monday was to have been his first day back at work after the December holidays.

Some of the passengers noticed a scuffle between a woman driving the car and two men, but Gwala said he had not taken much notice because he was chatting with another passenger.

“I did not know I was shot. Another passenger said I was bleeding. I looked down and noticed my clothes were stained with blood,” he said.

“The bullet head lay on the floor next to me. A lady in the taxi gave me a jersey to cover my wound and try to stop the bleeding.”

Gwala said the driver of the taxi and other passengers screamed at the woman to alert her that she had shot someone, but she drove off.

Naicker said the woman reported the incident at the Pinetown police station.

Rosemary Gwala, a part-time domestic worker, said paramedics notified her that her son had been shot.

She believed the woman had been careless and should have known better than to discharge a firearm in a public place.

“Fortunately everything turned out well for him. An X-ray revealed that the bullet hit the bone in his left arm,” she said. “He will undergo further tests.”

Daily News

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