• April 23rd, 2019
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Man dies from police stray bullet

WINDHOEK - A 29-year-old man died after he was allegedly struck by a bullet while holding his one-month-old baby in their shack in Okahandja Park informal settlement on Monday evening.

The man, Johannes Mbambi Muyingo, was shot at around 20h30 by a policeman who was pursuing a suspect wanted for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend.

The unidentified constable initially shot at a man identified as Johannes Kowetz, 29, on the upper thigh, whom the officer allegedly mistook for the suspect. Kowetz, an employee of a local supermarket, has been admitted to the Windhoek Central Hospital. Kowetz was not the suspect the police were looking for either. 

In a similar incident earlier this month, Lavinia Kagola, 27, a mother of two, was struck by stray a bullet believed to have been fired by a policeman in Kilimanjaro informal settlement. 
Kagola later died from her injuries at the Katutura State Hospital.

The bullet that struck Muyingo went through the door and struck him in back and exited him from the front, eventually going through the corrugated iron sheets.

“He (Muyingo) stood up, murmured the word ‘meme’ (mother), and collapsed on the blankets that I was laying on the floor for the baby to sleep. The baby fell on the other side,” narrated Muyingo’s girlfriend, Maria Petrus.
Petrus, 26, alerted her neighbours by screaming for help from her shack.

When the neighbours came out to inspect, they met an officer clad in civilian clothes busy handcuffing Kowetz.
The neighbours alerted the officer that he had shot at someone inside a shack but he allegedly responded that he is a police officer.  

A relative, Claudia Kameya, told New Era that the residents followed the officer to a private vehicle he was driving but he shortly fled the scene. The residents pursued the officer and caught him in the end.

Nampol spokesperson Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi confirmed a constable has been arrested and charged with murder, attempted murder and negligence in handling a firearm. 

Petrus’ family wants the police to take over Muyingo’s burial expenses and arrangements in Rundu and take care for his child.

“Government must take care of the child he left behind. He took care of us, now who will look after us?” asked Muyingo’s aunt Magdalena Mbaku.

“If the officers had already arrested a person [Kowetz] why did he still fire the shots [that killed Muyingo]?  The policeman who did this must also assist and contribute to the burial,” Muyingo’s cousin, Ester Ntjamba, said.
Kanguatjivi would not comment on the family’s request when asked to yesterday.

Selma Ikela
2018-09-19 09:15:09 7 months ago

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