Pretoria - Shopping at the Atterbury Value Mart was disrupted on Wednesday when a man shot himself in the parking lot of the complex.
The man is said to have shot his wife in the morning at his house before fleeing the scene. Police spokesman Warrant Officer Dave Miller said police received a call from people saying there was a shooting at The Glades Residential Estates in Lynnwood.
“Upon arrival, officers discovered a [dead] white female in her 50s. Through witnesses and investigations, it was established that the husband was somehow involved,” he said.
Miller said the description of the husband’s vehicle was circulated to police officers who were able to establish that the man’s vehicle had a tracker.
“The tracking company was able to activate the tracker and the vehicle was spotted in Atterbury. Members of the Gauteng Flying Squad, Garsfontein police station, the tracking company and the Tactical Response Team responded,” he said.
The car was found parked in the underground parking but the man managed to drive out when he saw police.
He then parked in the open parking bays next to McDonald’s. “When police approached his vehicle, the man shot and killed himself,” said Miller.
Shoppers gathered in their numbers to see what was happening. A woman said she had been driving when she saw the police cars and a chopper pass her and decided to stop at a McDonald’s and not go in the same direction as them.
“I told my friend that we should get into McDonald’s and have something to eat as we did not want to be caught in between what was happening there but to our surprise, the incident came to right where we were,” she said.
Miller said investigations are still continuing.
Meanwhile, research by the Medical Research Council has revealed that three women die each day in South Africa at the hands of their intimate partners - and this was probably an underestimate, because in one in five murders the perpetrator is never identified. The study also revealed that tougher gun controls led to the rate of female homicides being almost halved between 1999 and 2009.
Authors of the research, professors Naeemah Abrahams, Shanaaz Mathews and Lorna Martin, presented their findings to members of Parliament’s oversight committees on health and women, children and people with disabilities on Wednesday.