Cape Town - A fake cop accused of beating two men to a pulp in New Horizons in a suspected vigilante attack is behind bars after Grassy Park police arrested him on Thursday.
This follows a series of attacks on men in their 20s in the area, in which large groups of men, who wear balaclavas, impersonate police and beat up any males seen on the streets at night with baseball bats, pickaxes and pangas.
On Thursday, victim Damian Khan, 27, told the Daily Voice he was attacked in November by the group, who are known to drive around in a white BMW and a minivan, but only came forward this week as he was bedridden after having two operations.
He says he walked to a local shop to buy electricity when the vehicles pulled up next to him.
“Everyone at the shop started running. All I heard was: ‘SAPS! Staan vas! (Stand still!)” Damian says.
“They started moering (beating) me with a baseball bat and they also had guns.
“They dislocated my arm and even tried to drive over me as I lay flou (out cold) in the road.”
Khan was found by residents and rushed to Victoria Hospital where he underwent two operations.
“It was mainly my arm and my leg that were injured and I couldn’t walk. I was scared they were going to kill me.”
In another incident on Monday night, Marlon Jaftha,28, says he came under attack by the same group who assaulted him with a pickaxe, pangas and a spade while he was walking with his girlfriend.
“There were more than 30 men on top of me. They just say they are SAPS and start moering (beating) you. We don’t know why,” he says.
“I have 10 stitches in my head, a broken arm and stitches on my leg.”
Station commander, Colonel Dawood Laing, says the 20-year-old fake cop was arrested at his home in Pelikan Park on Thursday after detectives followed up on leads.
“There is no need for vigilantism in New Horizons as my officers make arrests there for drugs and other crimes almost everyday,” he warned.
“Impersonating a police officer is a crime and our officers do not wear balaclavas or drive around moering (assaulting) people.
“The suspect will appear in the Wynberg Magistrates’ Court on Friday on assault charges.”