The affordable education loan option
Durban - There were two attacks on homes in Westville on Wednesday, with a pensioner badly hurt, a domestic worker throttled and a boss and his secretary tied up and robbed.
In the first incident, a 65-year-old pensioner, who only wanted to be known as Mr Reddy, was assaulted by two robbers while gardening.
His wife was also manhandled, and their domestic worker was throttled and dragged from the bedroom into the lounge as their four young grandchildren watched.
Reliving the trauma, Mrs Reddy said she was relieved the intruders had not hurt the children.
“I don’t think I would have survived that,” she said on Wednesday, weeping uncontrollably.
“They demanded the house and car keys and jewellery. They also wanted to know where the safe was, but they panicked when I pressed the alarm and left with the TV and jewellery,” she said.
It was only after the robbers left that the family found Mr Reddy bleeding profusely outside. He was taken to Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital.
The Reddys said this was the second break-in at the house this year. Reddy’s daughter-in-law said residents lived in fear, but “don’t have many options”.
“If we knew of a safer place we would have relocated a long time ago,” she said.
In a second incident, businessman Brian Preston and his secretary were working from his home when they were attacked, tied up and blindfolded.
The attackers were interrupted by the arrival of Preston’s daughter-in-law, Corinne Preston.
Part of the gang was in the house demanding jewellery and the car keys while one waited in the getaway car. She said she thought the driver in the getaway car must have alerted his accomplices of her arrival as they immediately drove off with two cellphones and jewellery.
“We are just grateful that no one was physically harmed,” she said.
Warrant Officer Solomon Mbele said Westville police were investigating two cases of house robbery.
In the crime statistics released last week, Westville recorded an increase in house robberies and burglaries.