Cape Town - A high-speed car chase through Green Point after three women were held at gunpoint ended with a police officer being shot and wounded, and a robbery suspect being arrested.
Police spokesman Andre Traut said Sea Point police went to investigate an armed robbery complaint in St Bedes Street at about 11.30pm on Tuesday, and upon their arrival were told that two men had fled in a taxi.
After police gave chase, the taxi was pulled over in Main Road, Green Point, he said.
“During the men’s arrest, one of them fired shots at the officers, wounding a 35-year-old policeman in his leg. One suspect was arrested and is being detained on charges of attempted murder and robbery. The second suspect is still being sought.”
Green Point Neighbourhood Watch operations manager Bradley Braithwaite said the armed robbery had left the residents of the neighbourhood in shock. “This type of event is something we’re not used to in our area.”
He said the two men had allegedly held three women at gunpoint outside a block of flats in St Bedes Street and took their cellphones and wallets. “Police got there quickly and went to look for them (the robbers).”
Braithwaite said the injured officer was rushed to hospital and was in a stable condition.
“It is a shocking incident. We heard the gunshots go off and just assumed it was firecrackers. Residents are asking questions and people have been concerned about the officer.”
He said crime in the area had not been on the increase.
Police provincial commissioner Arno Lamoer said: “Our members were doing their jobs and were shot at by criminals. Anyone who attacks a police officer, we will arrest them and they will face the full might of the law.
He congratulated the officers for their work in apprehending the suspects.
Mayco member for safety and security JP Smith said it was imperative that police do everything in their power to arrest and convict criminals. “All of these mechanisms lay in the hands of national government. If you can’t protect police, police cannot protect the public.”
He congratulated the officers for their work in apprehending the robbers, after putting themselves in the line of fire.
“Thank you for your efforts. It is sad that not even a police officer is safe,” he said.
The police’s annual report of the 2013/14 financial year stated 68 of its members died while on duty as result of either murder or motor vehicle accidents. Eleven officers died in the Western Cape.