PORT ELIZABETH - Three people were shot and killed in two shooting incidents in a bloody weekend in Port Elizabeth's crime-ridden Northern Areas, police said on Monday.
In the first incident on Friday night, police spokeswoman Colonel Priscilla Naidu said, Nadine January, 32, and Clint Mathews, 31, were shot dead. They had been sleeping at the back of a house in Brass Street in Bloemendal.
Naidu said the following morning January's body was discovered lying on the shack floor while Mathews was found dead in the neighbour's yard.
The motive for the killings was unknown at this stage.
Naidu confirmed that January was in the National Prosecuting Authority's (NPA) witness protection programme for an ongoing case for a murder which took place earlier this year.
A day before January was killed, she was released from the programme due to "certain violations", said Naidu.
Police are investigating two cases of murder and no arrests have been made. Meanwhile, police swiftly arrested a 23-year-old gang affiliate during the early hours of Monday morning after Kurtley Bruiners, 23, was shot and killed on Sunday night.
Naidu said it was alleged that Bruiners and three friends were standing in an alley next to the boundary wall of Avalon Street in Gelvandale when two men, known to them, came up the alleyway from Van Duuren Street.
Naidu said it was alleged that when the two men were halfway up the alleyway, one of them started shooting at the group.
Bruiners sustained gunshot wounds to the stomach and chest and died on the scene while his three friends managed to escape any injury.
Naidu said immediately after the incident, the Provincial Organised Crime Investigation Unit were in pursuit of the two suspects. She said one suspect was arrested at a house in Zimdahl Street in Gelvandale while the other is still at large.
The suspect was detained on a charge of murder and is expected to appear in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate's Court soon.
Meanwhile, the Anti-Gang Unit continued to clamp down on the illegal possession of guns and confiscated several firearms at the weekend.
Naidu said a 9mm Norinco firearm and ammunition was confiscated from a house in Goliath Street in Helenvale while three toy firearms from a house in Cenonia Close in Bethelsdorp and an air rifle found hidden between shacks in Kobus Road in Gelvandale were also confiscated.
Naidu said a 28-year-old man was arrested in Bethelsdorp for the illegal possession of a PX firearm which was reported stolen in Durban Central in April.
"While conducting stop and search operations in Langdon Street in Bethesldorp, members saw two males running down Shaheed Street Ext 36 in Bethelsdorp."
One of them was seen with a firearm in his hand. A foot chase ensued and the suspect was seen tossing the firearm in the yard."
Naidu said in the last seven days, a total of 12 firearms were recovered of which nine had been reported stolen.