Female reporter traumatised after more than a dozen cops demand entry to her home
Cape Town - A 27-year-old Cape Town journalist said on Monday she had been left traumatised after allegedly being harassed by police.
Nabeelah Mohedeen, from Brooklyn, in Milnerton, is a reporter at the Athlone News.
Mohedeen said she had never felt such fear as she did on Friday, when the alleged incident took place.
She told African News Agency (ANA) she had been watching movies when, just after 5pm, she heard her neighbour’s dogs barking, which usually meant something was wrong.
Mohedeen said when she looked out of her window she saw about 20 police officers, one with a crowbar, trying to gain access to her home via a gate.
“All my neighbours were outside, shouting at the police officers that they had the wrong house.
“I was hysterical, I was alone at home and the officers were shouting at me to open the gate.
“My next door neighbour, a male, tried to stop them harassing me, telling them to leave me alone. He tried to open his gate and the police closed it.”
She said during the hysteria, she asked police what they were doing at her home but they did not answer. She told officers she was alone, her husband was not home and asked if they could wait for him.
She alleges the officers responded that their visit had nothing to do with her husband.
Mohedeen said she was under the impression that the group could be pretending to be police, and that she was going to be raped.
She said her newly installed gate was damaged as the men tried to enter, and that an officer called Solomons jumped on the gate.
“We had the gate installed last week and it cost R6 000. I shouted and told the officers it was a new gate. I was scared these were not police and they were coming to rape me.
“They had uniforms and badges on so I decided I would open as my neighbours were all outside as well (as witnesses),” she explained.
As she tried opening her front door, Mohedeen said her newly cut keys made it difficult to do so, which was exacerbated by the wooden door being swollen.
“The more I was telling the officers I was struggling, the more they said I was trying to buy time to hide drugs. I shouted ’I cannot open the gate’, I was crying and scared.
“Solomons said if I had nothing to hide, I would throw the key (to him), which I did. They soon saw I was not lying as they also struggled opening the door,” she said.
She said as the group of officers stormed her home, she tried calling her husband and father, but was warned to put her phone away.
Mohedeen said she asked three times if the officers had a warrant and was blatantly ignored. When she called Solomons a fool, he lunged at her, but the only female officer in her sight jumped in.
“I was s**t scared. He came at me, all his male colleagues stood around doing nothing, but a female officer stepped in.
“My husband eventually came and asked questions, but he was also blatantly ignored.
“The officers wrote their report, said sorry and left. I was so angry.
“I have filed charges at Milnerton SAPS, who were so apologetic and offered me counselling,” she said.
The incident has left her paranoid at the slightest sound, she said, afraid of being home alone and “scared and anxious”.
“I am sad, horrified that people who are supposed to keep you safe will invade your privacy like that. They were intimidating and harassing me.
“I want to know what training police are getting from their captains in light of everything happening in our country towards women and children. Has their training not been tweaked to handle women and children in a better or more gentle way?”
Provincial police spokesperson Sergeant Noloyiso Rwexana confirmed a case of malicious damage to property and intimidation had been filed at Milnerton police station and said the matter had been referred to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate for further investigation.
African News Agency (ANA)