Po­lice shouldn’t be trig­ger happy, says Cele

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS -

NA­TIONAL Po­lice Com­mis­sioner Bheki Cele yes­ter­day told po­lice grad­u­ates they had the right to re­turn fire if shot at by crim­i­nals but should not be­come “trig­ger happy”.

“Don’t be trig­ger happy, as­sess the sit­u­a­tion prop­erly. We must avoid the Mabopane in­ci­dent,” said Cele dur­ing a pa­rade of Tac­ti­cal Team trainees at the Pre­to­ria SAPS col­lege.

He was re­fer­ring to an in­ci­dent in Oc­to­ber in which a 28year-old woman was killed when po­lice fired shots at a grey Toy­ota Con­quest she was trav­el­ling in.

Po­lice had mis­taken the car for a stolen ve­hi­cle which they had tracked to a nearby fill­ing sta­tion, ac­cord­ing to the In­de­pen­dent Com­plaints Direc­torate. Two more peo­ple, a 31year-old woman and a 28-year-old man, were in­jured in the in­ci­dent while the driver es­caped un­scathed.

Cele re­it­er­ated a state­ment he made when an­nounc­ing ap­point­ments of two new pro­vin­cial com­mis­sion­ers in Pre­to­ria on Thurs­day, say­ing the new re­cruits should shoot at crim­i­nals who shoot at them.

The two Tac­ti­cal Re­sponse Teams for Dur­ban and Jo­han­nes­burg were Cele’s brain­child and are aimed at meet­ing the medium-to high-se­cu­rity risk needs of sta­tions and polic­ing clus­ters.

They con­sist of a min­i­mum of 50 mem­bers per clus­ter.

Cele said he was proud of the grad­u­ates and warned them against be­ing cor­rupted by crim­i­nals.

He said crim­i­nals should be the ones liv­ing in fear. “We are sick and tired of crim­i­nals,” Cele said. He told them to use a lan­guage that crim­i­nals un­der­stood when they had to.

“It’s ei­ther they will hear bet­ter or never hear again. Squeeze the space for thugs very, very hard,” Cele said. – Sapa

SALUTE: Bheki Cele, dur­ing a at of tac­ti­cal team trainees.

PIC­TURES: DA­MARIS HEL­WIG

IN ACTION: The Tac­ti­cal Re­sponse Teams which grad­u­ated at the SAPS Train­ing Col­lege in Pre­to­ria West show their moves.

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