Four police vehicles smashed by community members in Kliptown 

Saturday May 27, a violent confrontation broke out between community members and police officers when community members in the Kliptown Mandela Square informal settlement were confronted with a cable theft that left them without electricity for three days.

Cable theft is on the rise in South Africa and is an easy way to make money. The damage caused by the theft costs the economy R130 million every day.

A police van was dispatched to investigate a suspected cable theft in the Mandela Square informal settlement. Due to mistrust and lack of basic services, community members smashed the window of the police van, causing the situation to spiral out of control, and it is alleged that the police unlawfully arrested an innocent teenager.

Members of the community, angered by the alleged wrongful arrest, went to the Kliptown police station, throwing rocks and demanding the release of an innocent teenager. The situation quickly turned ugly when four police officers, three men and one woman, assaulted a teenager.

Two female community members asked the officers to stop hitting the teenager, the officers left the boy alone, and it was alleged that a police officer arrested the two women for asking to stop hitting the boy.

The station’s brigadier met with community members to hear what they had to say. The brigadier said that the officers arrested the two women because they had committed a crime. He went on to say that any eyewitness should come forward so that police can investigate further.

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