Muldersdrift shooting: Len Cloete’s friends say he ’would not hurt a fly without reason’
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Durban – While Pretoria husband and father Len Cloete remains in a coma in hospital, his friends have spoken out about the events leading up to the shooting in which he was shot in the head after disarming a police officer.
They say the gym owner was the “purest soul” and he “would never hurt a fly without reason”.
The 54-year-old bodybuilder was shot at close range after he snatched a firearm from a policewoman after he had endured in a prolonged verbal altercation with police and security at the Misty Hills Lodge in Muldersdrift at the weekend.
Cloete, his wife Chantal and their friends, Breydon and Chantél Blignaut had booked into the lodge for a night. The lodge had kicked Cloete out of the lodge and called police to the scene for assistance.
The South Coast Herald reported that the couples planned to have supper at the lodge and were planning a Christmas event. The couples chose to stay over as they did not want to travel due to curfew restrictions.
The Blignauts told the publication that they had never expected that the evening would turn out the way it did. They declined to go into further details, adding that the matter was under investigation.
In a post on Facebook, Breydon described Cloete as "one of the purest souls".
"My friend we love you dearly, we are here for you every step of the way, know you’re family is well looked after and safe the way you wanted it.
“Rest all you can and get well soonest for we still have a lot to concur. What the people don’t know is Len Cloete is the most purest of souls and would never hurt a fly without reason.
“He is the greatest example of what a dad and husband should be, we can all learn from him and will continue learning for many many years. Let's do this Len," he wrote.
Cloete remains in a coma but is in a stable condition. It is believed that the bullet is still lodged in his brain which is still swollen. It is unclear when or if medical teams will operate.
IOL previously reported that Cloete, who was filmed in his underwear arguing with police officers, had been asked to leave the Misty Hills Lodge following an argument with management and security personnel.
The police were also called to the scene.
In a video clip showing only part of the incident, Cloete is seen arguing with police.
After swearing and insulting officers, he then disarms a female police officer and is shot in the head by her colleague.
Police watchdog Ipid - the Independent Police Investigative Directorate - is investigating the shooting.