AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit today on behalf of Anja Pentz lodged a formal complaint against T.A. Mashitisho, an investigator at the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) after the investigation into alleged abuse of police power at the Wierdabrug police station in April of this year has not yielded any apparent results. The complaint was lodged with the office of Jennifer Ntlaseng, the Executive Director of IPID.
Pentz was allegedly assaulted on 22 April 2021 by officials at the Wierdabrug police station and jailed for hours after she had wanted to report a hijack attempt. The police official charged her for being “drunk in public” and locked her up after she had attempted to take pictures of them refusing to assist her in reporting a crime. Pentz was allegedly grabbed by her neck, money also disappeared from her purse and police members allegedly damaged her phone. The Private Prosecution Unit has supported Pentz since May with regard to the charges that she had already laid against the police officials at that time. The charges include assault, theft (money from her wallet) and malicious damage to property (her cell phone).
According to the station, the docket against the relevant police officials from Wierdabrug was already handed over to Mashitisho in May. Nevertheless, he has not provided any feedback to Pentz or the Private Prosecution Unit about the investigation as of yet. According to the acting station commander of the Wierdabrug police station a disciplinary investigation was only registered on 21 September 2021 against the commander who was on duty on the night of the incident.
According to adv. Phyllis Vorster, prosecutor at the Private Prosecution Unit, it is very concerning that it seems that an institution that is supposed to investigate the misconduct of police officials are now simply shrugging their shoulders and hoping that the case will disappear. “AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit will not allow these types of violence against woman to simply be swept under the rug. We will continue to apply pressure until real steps have been taken against the relevant police officials.”
- Read the previous statement here.