Two suspects have been taken into police custody after they allegedly attempted to ambush two police officers and their colleague in Vryheid. According to KZN police spokesperson Colonel Robert Netshiunda, the incident occurred on Tuesday, April 4th, 2023, as the officers were driving to work.
“The brave police officers returned fire, and that compelled the suspects to flee into the nearby bushes,” explained Netshiunda. While the two officers from the Provincial Task Team were unharmed, their colleague sustained gunshot wounds to both arms and was rushed to hospital for treatment.
Following the attack, a search for the suspects was initiated, and with the aid of a K9, the suspects were found. Netshiunda noted that they continued firing shots at the police before surrendering. In possession of the suspects, an AK47 assault rifle and two pistols, one of which was licensed, were found.
Preliminary investigations suggest that one of the suspect’s brothers is in custody for the murder of Sergeant Sakheyedwa Mlambo and was due to appear in court on the same day that the officers were ambushed. One of the officers was opposing bail on the matter. “Sgt Mlambo, who was attached to Vryheid Crime Intelligence, was brutally shot and killed at the Hwanqana area in December 2021,” said Netshiunda.
One of the arrested suspects was also wanted for the murder of Sgt Mlambo’s father, Bhekuyise, who was shot and killed at his home in January 2020. However, authorities are still searching for a vehicle that was spotted dropping off the suspects before the foiled ambush.
The arrested suspects will appear before the Vryheid Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, April 6th, 2023, facing three counts of attempted murder, as well as illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.