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Cape Town - The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) said it was angered and concerned by the increasing "trend" of police killings, which could not be left unattended.

This after a 34-year-old police officer was fatally shot when suspects opened fire at the police vehicle in Lavender Hill, Cape Town, on Monday night.

“The killing of police is once again on an increase and this perturbing trend cannot be left unattended. We urge police officers to work in larger groups and be wary of the environments they operate under, and when their lives are under threat, they should act decisively. Police can no longer die with their firearms,” said Popcru spokesperson Richard Mamabolo in a statement.

Mamabolo further appealed to communities to work together with law enforcement agencies in finding the suspects behind the murder. 

“We urge the SAPS management to speedily attend to ensuring the increase of police officers, improved infrastructural integrity and tools of work in ensuring visibility and better service delivery,” he said.

According to police spokesperson, Lieutenant Colonel Andrè Traut, on Monday evening at around 11.15pm, two members attached to the Steenberg Crime Prevention Unit approached five suspects at Fawley Court, Lavender Hill, who fled on the arrival of police. 

“During the pursuit of the suspects, they opened fire at the police vehicle in Grindel Crescent and wounded the driver, a 34-year-old sergeant. He was rushed to hospital where he later succumbed to death. His partner, a constable, escaped the attack unharmed,” said Traut. 

The provincial police management expressed condolences to the family and colleagues of the member who died while protecting the community and assured them that every endeavour would be made to apprehend the suspects so that they can be prosecuted with the full might of the law, Traut said.

“Any person who can assist us with information regarding this case is kindly requested to contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111. All information will be treated confidentially,” he added.

African News Agency (ANA)