Thursday, May 21, 2009

Criminal cops

Cop denies beating man to death

A Nigel police constable is facing a charge of murder in the Pretoria High Court after a suspect was allegedly beaten to death in the holding cells of the police station shortly after he had been arrested.

Constable Kyonya Josias Kgotle, 30, earlier in the Circuit Court in Delmas pleaded not guilty to beating Christopher van Rensburg to death on September 27 2005.
The trial has now been moved to the Pretoria High Court.

A certain Constable Vilakazi, who was allegedly also responsible for the death of the detainee, committed suicide shortly after Van Rensburg's body was discovered in a pool of blood in the holding cell.

Van Rensburg, along with a David Nkosi, was arrested in the early hours of the morning and taken to the Nigel Police Station, where Van Rensburg was assaulted. He died of trauma to the brain.

Nkosi, a security guard, testified that he was waiting for his girlfriend that night and that a man, whose name he did not know, but who later turned out to be Van Rensburg, was standing nearby, chatting to him. Nkosi said officers patrolling the area spotted them and started to chase them.

They were arrested and taken to the police station. Nkosi said they were questioned in the charge office, where they were accused of drinking in public.

Nkosi explained that he was not drinking, but he was instead hit in the face by one of the policemen.
The court was told that Van Rensburg asked the cop why he hit Nkosi, but he too was assaulted.

According to Nkosi a fight broke out between the police and Van Rensburg. A traffic cop who was present tried to separate them.
He and Van Rensburg were handcuffed and taken to separate holding cells.

Nkosi said he could hear the police assaulting Van Rensburg and the man was screaming. Nkosi said he also shouted for help, but nobody came to help.

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