The National Head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI), Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya, has welcomed the life sentence handed down to a suspect for the killing of a police officer in the North West.
Bathobile Colesto Khohliso (36) was sentenced to life imprisonment on Wednesday by the High Court seated in Klerksdorp for the murder of Constable Baliki Mogapi (33).
On 21 July 2016, members of Hartbeesfontein SAPS received an alert about an alarm that went off at an FNB ATM in Eenheid Street. Two police officials attended to the crime scene. Upon arrival, they spotted a security vehicle of a local security company parked nearby. The police approached the security vehicle to engage the security guard, however, the vehicle had been taken over by the suspects who had tied up the security guard.
The accused alighted from the security vehicle and fired a single shot which hit Constable Baliki Mogapi (33) in the head, fatally wounding him. His partner managed to exit the SAPS vehicle and subsequently fired a single shot in the direction of the fleeing assailant.
A serious manhunt by the Hawks’ Priority Violent Crimes unit of the Hawks and the Provincial Tactical Response Team led to the arrest of seven suspects in and around Pretoria and Katlehong. Two pistols and two vehicles were also seized.
The charges against the six suspects were later dropped. Khohliso was sentenced to life imprisonment and also received an additional 45 years for various counts including attempted murder, armed robbery, possession of a firearm and ammunition.
“I appreciate the work of all those who have participated in the resolution of this matter. One criminal will no longer pose any danger to ordinary people on the streets,” said Lieutenant General Lebeya.
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