Ipid reconstructs 'cleared crime scene' after death in police custody

25 February 2021 - 21:42
Ipid wants a private pathologist to conduct a second postmortem on the suspect who died in police custody. Stock photo.
Ipid wants a private pathologist to conduct a second postmortem on the suspect who died in police custody. Stock photo.
Image: 123RF/ANDREW NORRIS

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) has reconstructed a crime scene that was “cleared” four hours before the police watchdog was alerted to a death in  custody in Gauteng.

One of three suspects arrested for being in possession of an unlicensed firearm and dagga died in police custody about 1:30am on Wednesday.

“Due to the significant disjuncture between the police version and that of the suspects and the fact that Ipid was never called into the crime scene, the directorate has reconstructed the crime scene today [Thursday] and is in the process of appointing a private pathologist,” said Ipid national spokesperson Ndileka Cola.

Members of the Soweto crime intelligence gathering unit booked the three suspects out of Lenasia police station to go to Protea police station about 9pm on Tuesday.

“As alleged, the police officers interrogated the first suspect. While they were busy interviewing the suspect, he collapsed due to seizure. Paramedics were called and certified him dead.”

The two remaining suspects were taken back to the police cells in Lenasia in the early hours of February 24, said Cola.

A postmortem was conducted on Wednesday at the Diepkloof forensic pathology service but Ipid is seeking a second opinion from a private pathologist.

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