VIDEO: Family’s worst fears come true as top anti-gang unit cop Charl Kinnear gunned down
Cape Town – The worst fears of senior Anti-Gang Unit detective Lieutenant-Colonel Charl Kinnear’s family have come true.
On Friday, Kinnear was shot dead in his car on arriving at his home in Gearing Road, Bishop Lavis, shortly after 3pm, national police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo said in a statement. The details surrounding his killing are still very vague, he added.
At the end of last year, the family of Kinnear, who is probing several high-profile cases involving gangs resulting in arrests, had voiced how they feared for their lives.
“National police commissioner General Khehla John Sitole has expressed outrage at the killing of one the SAPS’s top investigators
'’The colonel was attached to the Western Cape Anti-Gang Unit as a section commander involved in investigations into several high-profile cases resulting in multiple arrests.
’’General Sitole has tasked the Provincial Commissioner of the Western Cape, Lieutenant General Yolisa Matakata, to immediately activate the 72-Hour Activation Plan.
’’This is a plan to mobilise critical departments, including Crime Intelligence, Forensic Experts, the Hawks and Tactical Units, to ensure that evidence or information that could assist in the successful investigation of this case is not lost.
"We are all saddened by this tragic untimely loss of Colonel Kinnear and his murder is huge loss to South Africa and its people.
"The South African Police Service will not rest until those responsible for his murder are brought to book," said Naidoo.
City of Cape Town safety and security mayoral committee member JP Smith told News24: ’’We cannot attribute the killing to any one grouping yet. But what is clear is that organised crime is becoming more and more brazen.’’
The shooting comes just two days after Police Minister Bheki Cele announced the creation of a steering committee involving the City of Cape Town, the police, the Hawks and the provincial community safety department to tackle the city's expanding extortion threat.
With more than 31 years’ service, Kinnear is the investigating officer into extortion involving several alleged underworld figures, including Nafiz Modack, Colin Booysen, Ashley Fields, Jacques Cronje and Carl Lakay.
He is also probing the murder of prominent lawyer Pete Mihalik, who was killed in his vehicle outside his son’s Green Point school.
Kinnear’s wife Nicolette told the Cape Times in January that two suspects were caught with hand grenades outside their Bishop Lavis home a week after Colonel Andre Kay was shot dead in front of his house in the same suburb in November last year.
This led to guards being deployed outside Kinnear’s home after the existence of a hit list came to light, but to the family’s dismay the guards were withdrawn from December 20.
Kinnear’s wife said in January: “We are not okay. Are we sleeping? No. The alarm goes off at odd hours, and with every sound, the entire house wakes up. We are so traumatised because you don’t know who is behind it and whether they are coming again.
“My husband is in the police force, but the attack was not just on him; the attack was on our family. We had police guarding us until December 19, then the guards were withdrawn.
“We are still at the same house. We have not been moved for our protection. That’s why I’m trying to find out how the instructions could have been given to withdraw the guards. And nobody can tell us who gave the instruction, or why.”
Nicolette said police victims of crime needed more support.
“There should be support in place for all police officers and their families who are attacked in this way. What are you to do when a grenade is thrown at your house or shots are fired?
“My husband had to sit our children down and prepare them by telling them what to do should something happen; no father should have to do that,” she said.