‘Police trio ignored our plea for help’

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Johannesburg - Three Rosebank police officers could face harsh disciplinary action after ignoring an alleged gay-bashing incident on Saturday night.

Gerald Pereira and his boyfriend, Stephan Annandale, were leaving Capitol Music nightclub in Rosebank when they were accosted by four men who made homophobic comments, followed by one man allegedly punching Pereira. His lip bleeding, Pereira knocked on the window of a passing police van and pointed out the attackers.

He said the three officers mumbled that they would help. “They drove up to the guys, spoke to them for about five seconds and then just drove off,” he said.

It was too dark to take down the van’s licence plate.

Annandale said he called the local police station, which was about 2km away, for help, but was told it would take an hour for a police car to arrive. Pereira said the next day, he laid a charge of assault and complained about the officers at the Rosebank station.

Provincial police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said an internal investigation was launched. If found guilty, the officers would face a disciplinary hearing.

He added that the suspected attackers had been identified, but no arrests had been made.

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