Ekurhuleni - “I’m locked in the office by my supervisor who brutally assaulted me in the office.”
This was a clip from an audio recording that circulated across WhatsApp groups and Facebook over the weekend, in which a woman is heard crying and asking for help after her supervisor allegedly began physically assaulting her, swearing at her and threatening her life.
Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Police Department (EMPD) spokesperson Chief Superintendent Wilfred Kgasago said after they saw the posts on the incident on social media, an effort was made to find the individuals involved in the incident.
They identified the alleged perpetrator as an EMPD officer serving a supervising role at the Tokoza police department, and the victim as a traffic warden in the precinct.
The names of the officer and his alleged victim are not yet known to the media as investigations into the matter ensue.
The victim in the recording claimed she had attempted to seek help in the past for her supervisor’s behavior, and didn’t know what to do.
She said: “I tried to report my supervisor to the union and nothing was done.”
According to an EMPD statement, the Chief of Police served the man on Wednesday with a letter suspending him for three months.
Kgasago said this will allow the department to conduct an investigation into the case.
In addition to the EMPD’s own internal investigation, an assault case was opened with SAPS that will be independently investigated.
“Assault is a serious crime especially in a law enforcement environment,” Kgasago said.
“We are investigating what happened so that action can be taken.”
Kgasago said that seeing reports like this is surprising in law enforcement. He said this is the first case he had seen in a while that alleges physical violence against a colleague at the police station.
“The city condemns any form of abuse against women and other vulnerable members of the society,” the EMPD statement reads.
“This matter is no different and we do hope to do a thorough investigation and get to the bottom of it as speedily as possible so that appropriate action is taken against the alleged perpetrator.”