Police arrest unlicensed Gauteng tavern owner after angry patrons attack two cops and burn police van
Police arrested the owner of a tavern in Muldersdrift on the West Rand on Saturday for trading without a licence and for selling booze after the 11pm curfew.
The arrest came after two policemen, who responded to a disturbance of peace complaint at 2.30am, came under attack by angry tavern patrons at the Video informal settlement in Rietfontein. The patrons then set the state vehicle alight.
“The members sought cover in a nearby shack as the group continued to pelt them with objects, allegedly threatening to kill the police members. The two members, one of them injured, managed to escape out of the shack and realised that the group had allegedly torched the state vehicle. Public Order Police arrived and managed to quell the situation,” SAPS said in a statement.
#sapsGP Police arrested the owner of an unlicensed liquor outlet in Muldersdrift in the West Rand, and confiscated liquor. This arrest follows an attack on two police officers from Muldersdrift SAPS by patrons that had been drinking at the outlet. NPhttps://t.co/ar6IhrEjB5 pic.twitter.com/f599cSuTSh— SA Police Service 🇿🇦 (@SAPoliceService) April 3, 2021
The injured member was rushed to a nearby hospital in Krugersdorp where he was treated and discharged. None of the patrons were injured.
Police said that the owner will be charged with contravening the Gauteng Liquor Board legislation for trading in liquor without a licence. The suspect will also be charged with contravention of the Disaster Management Act under the Covid-19 level 1 lockdown which prohibits the sale of alcohol after 11pm.
A separate docket has been opened for investigation in relation to the attack on police members and malicious damage to property (torching of state vehicle).
The acting provincial police commissioner, Maj-Gen Tommy Mthombeni said: “Our members who came under attack by this lawless group of people, who are said to have been very aggressive, should actually be commended for sacrificing their safety and ensuring no member of the public got injured.
“They had the option to use their service firearms but instead used their discretion not to use those firearms, averting a possible bloodbath. Our employee health and wellness teams must continue to give priority attention to these members to ensure their emotional and psychological recovery,” Mtombeni said.