Friday 10 July 2020
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iol - 10 days ago

Langa rape survivor and mom pepper-sprayed by cop

Cape Town – A Langa mother and daughter who went to report a rape at the police station said they never expected to receive secondary victimisation from the officers there. Samke Mzukwa, 25, who was raped by a family friend, said she and her mother were assaulted and pepper-sprayed by Langa police, who allegedly refused to open a case. She said after the officers refused to take her statement they went home, but when they returned the next day a detective from the Bishop Lavis police station was called to assist them. “When we went to the police station, they said I must sit down and I said I can’t as I was feeling uncomfortable. “Then they said I must go wait outside. There I met a lady who was reporting a case of domestic abuse and as I was chatting to her, a cop came and grabbed my phone and pepper-sprayed me. My mother came to intervene and before she even got the words to ask why he was doing that, he turned and pepper-sprayed her,” Mzukwa said. Police spokesperson Noloyiso Rwexana said they were investigating rape, and when the assault allegations were put to her, she advised the mother and daughter to report their grievances to the station commander. “A rape investigation was opened by the police. The complainants are advised to report the matter of being assaulted and pepper-sprayed to the station commander, so the matter can be investigated by Ipid.” Samke said the officers then called another detective, from the Bishop Lavis police station, and she assisted her and sent her for a medical check-up. “I feel like they could have addressed the situation differently. They shouldn’t have pepper-sprayed me; they came at us with such violence.” Samke’s mother, Vuyelwa, said it was a horrible experience, especially since her daughter was violated and in pain. “She is not okay. This was a family friend that did this to her, someone she knew and trusted. “The police could have handled this better. I am now limping and I still have a rash on my face from the pepper spray,” Vuyelwa said. Cape Times


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