A police officer accused of shooting dead a woman outside a police station was refused bail by the Kempton Park Regional Court because there was a possibility he may use a firearm again. Photo: Itumeleng English, The Star
A police officer accused of shooting dead a woman outside a police station was refused bail by the Kempton Park Regional Court because there was a possibility he may use a firearm again. Photo: Itumeleng English, The Star

‘I thought my life was in danger’

By Miranda Andrew Time of article published May 4, 2011

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Bail was refused on Wednesday to a Kempton Park policeman accused of shooting dead a woman outside the local police station.

The Kempton Park Regional Court postponed the matter to June 23

for further investigation.

It heard on Wednesday that Sergeant Manape Phineas Kgoale was found guilty in 2003 of firearm negligence.

He allegedly shot dead Jeanette Odendaal, 45, last Tuesday outside the Kempton Park police station after she crashed into a stationary police car.

According to an affidavit read to the court by Kgoale's lawyer Riaan Louw on Wednesday morning, he thought a car was being stolen or hijacked outside the police station.

“I was on duty that night... when I was summoned by an almost hysterical car guard that someone was trying to steal a car. I went outside and heard a loud noise and thought it was a gunshot.”

“I saw a car going backward and forward, and bumping into other vehicles.”

He could not see the face of the person behind the wheel because of the poor lighting, given that it was 7.50pm.

“I saw the person move their hand to the right shoulder and thought they were going for a gun. They had an object clenched in the hand. I thought my life was in danger. My call for them to stop went unheeded.”

He said there was no time to fire a warning shot.

“I aimed for the shoulder but somehow it changed course and hit her in the chest,” he said. Only later he saw it was a woman driver.

Kgoale denied that the car guard was present, as reported in various newspapers.

Louw questioned why the State was opposing bail and said Kgoale had no motive to kill Odendaal. There were also discrepancies in the car guard's statement.

“Can't you see there is something wrong? Where is the motive? My client had no motive to kill her.”

Louw said Kgoale had been suspended, did not own a firearm and was not a flight risk.

“There is no evidence to support any allegation and he is a threat to society.”

The court heard that the results of forensic tests and a post mortem examination were not yet ready. -

Sapa

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