We are not safe, not even in our own homes

We are not safe, not even in our own homes

Brakpan – The Bottlebrush Street resident, who turned 54 on Wednesday, last week, contacted the Herald to share her story and believes the incident must serve as a warning to other residents.

“I can’t even begin to describe to you how you feel when this happens,” she said, her voice cracking with emotion.

“We are not safe, not even in our own homes.”

The woman, who lives with her mother (75) and father (78), both of whom are wheelchair bound, explained that her son (33) and a male friend (58) had joined them that evening for dinner, in celebration of her birthday.

“It was about 7pm and we had just finished dinner, when this man walked through my front door,” she said.

“I first thought there was something wrong with him, because he seemed confused, but then I saw the gun in his hand.”

The gunman was quickly joined by two other men, both of whom were armed with knives, while another man kept watch outside.

“They were swearing, they told us to sit down, close our eyes and shut up; we were told not to look at them” said the woman.

“My friend had been in the kitchen and the one with the gun screamed at him: ‘This is a real gun mother******, you will listen to me!’

“He hit my friend in the face and was trying to hit him over the head with the gun.”

The robbers, who had a khaki-coloured canvas bag with them, then started collecting everyone’s cellphones.

“The one with the gun kept on asking: ‘Where is the safe, where are the jewels?’” said the woman.

“I’m currently unemployed and looking after my parents; I told them we don’t have any money or jewellery, and there is no safe, but he was insistent.”

The woman recalled that this robber also questioned the whereabouts of a ‘youngster’ in the house.

“There are no children in the house, but I have an African Grey that mimics children,” she said.

“I then realised just how much they knew about what was going on in my house.”

The robbers searched the house and, after about an hour, fled with six cellphones, a tablet, two computers and a computer monitor.

“My son immediately ran out, climbed into his car and went to look for them, but they were gone,” said the woman.

“Our neighbours said they saw a red Volkswagen Golf parked outside my house.”

The woman told the Herald that the incident has changed her life.

“I know it’s awful to say, but I thank God they didn’t rape me or my mom,” she said.

“I can’t sleep at night and I’m even too scared to let my parents sit outside in the garden during the day.

“These criminals have deprived us of the simplest of pleasures and it’s so unfair.

“We lock ourselves in our home and we are basically under house arrest.

“Is this the way we should live?”

Adding to the trauma of the event, the woman claims Brakpan police arrived at her house only about an hour after the robbery had been reported.

“The first officers on the scene told me they received the dispatch from Midrand, which didn’t make any sense to me,” she said.

“What’s even more disturbing is that they had a civilian woman with them.

“I didn’t think it was appropriate for the situation.”…

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