A member of the Community Policing Forum (CPF) in Mpumalanga will be appearing in the Wakkerstroom Periodical Court on Wednesday on a charge of assault.
The 44-year-old man is alleged to have beaten the child with a belt all over his body.
Provincial police spokesperson, Colonel Donald Mdhluli said information revealed the CPF member’s cell phone went missing and the man suspected the eight-year-old boy to have taken it.
The boy lives in the same street as the CPF member.
“The man reportedly sent his niece to call the boy and thereafter the CPF member allegedly assaulted the child with the belt all over his body. The victim sustained some visible injuries.
“The boy's mother then reported the matter to the police on Monday, September 4. An investigation was conducted which led to the arrest of the suspect yesterday, Tuesday, September 5,” Mdhluli said.
Police said more charges could be added against the suspect as their investigation continues.
The Police Commissioner in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela strongly condemned the incident.
“Though we appreciate the support that we continuously receive from our partners in the fight against crime, we do not condone vigilantism at all. Instead, we should trust our justice system,” Manamela said.