Potchefstroom – A 38-year-old police sergeant is spending the long weekend behind bars after he was arrested along with two suspected thieves that he allegedly freed by removing their handcuffs.
Matters came to a head after alert community members in Letlhabile, North West, spotted two suspicious characters carrying a car engine block in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The community members accosted the pair before making a citizen’s arrest.
They handed the suspects over to the police.
While waiting to be transported to a nearby detention facility, the pair who had been handcuffed to each other escaped from the Community Service Centre (CSC).
Initially, it was suggested that the pair had overpowered and assaulted a police officer inside the CSC before escaping.
However, police were later persuaded that one of their own had removed the handcuff and set the suspected thieves free.
Police managed to rearrest the suspects a few hours later in Letlhabile.
The police sergeant was arrested for allegedly aiding the escapees.
The Provincial Commissioner of North West, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena thanked the community and all police units involved for their diligence and quick reaction that led to the rearrest of the escapees.
He said corrupt employees will not be tolerated within the ranks of the South African Police Service.
All the suspects are expected to appear before the Brits Magistrate’s Court on Monday, (19 June 2023)