A suspected hijacker was killed in a dramatic morning shootout with police officers in Chatsworth on Tuesday.
Officers on patrol in the area, responding to a spate of hijackings in the last week, confronted the occupants of a suspicious looking vehicle.
In a hail of gunfire, one of the suspected hijackers was killed and another was arrested.
Police spokesperson Major Thulani Zwane said the encounter between officers and gunmen took place shortly before sunrise.
“Officers were conducting their operations to curb hijackings in their area this morning when they spotted a grey VW Polo vehicle driving at high speed on Sheridan Road. The occupants noticed the marked police vehicle following them and began firing at police,” he said.
“Police returned fire, fatally wounding one suspect. The second suspect was arrested and the third managed to flee the scene on foot after their vehicle crashed,” Zwane said.
He added that it was later established that the car had been hijacked in Chatsworth.
“A firearm was also recovered from the scene and it will be taken for ballistic tests to establish if it was used in any other crimes in the province.
Zwane said the arrested suspect, 27, will be charged for being in possession of property suspected to be stolen, possession of an unlicensed firearm and attempted murder. He will appear in the Chatsworth Magistrates Court soon.
“We believe that both men might be linked to other hijackings in the area,” he added.