The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) has announced its intent to probe the shooting which led to the death of Athlone resident, Michael Volkwyn. According to the IPID spokesperson, Moses Dlamini, the investigation stems from numerous media reports on the family’s suspicion that police played a bigger role in the death of Volkwyn as opposed to police’s statement that the suspect took his own life.
Volkwyn, said to be mentally ill, shot a police officer in the face, as police members closed in on his home to remove his dogs. One of the 13 dogs had allegedly attacked a neighbour, who laid a complaint with police. What followed was a 14 hour standoff between police and a negotiator, to have Volkwyn hand himself over for arrest.
Dlamini says at this point not much can be disclosed on the details of the investigation but adds that according to IPID legislation, an investigation into the actions of police is a priority and will follow the necessary procedures if found to be the reason for the death of Volkwyn.
“There were numerous reports about police involvement in trying to negotiate at first and then possibly resolve the situation with the shot that killed Mr Volkwyn. At this point, it is not known for sure that the suspect committed suicide or whether the result of his death was due to police action. At this point we are trying to determine what is the situation because if it is a matter that falls within the mandate of IPID, the necessary steps need to be taken,” Dlamini added.
Meanwhile, Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega visited the police officer, Leroy Scott, who had been shot in the face by Volkwyn. Police have maintained that Volkwyn had died at his own hands after police entered his home on Wednesday morning.
Western Cape police major Jeremy Veary says two, very professionally handmade machine guns, a handmade pistol as well as a zip gun was found in Volkwyn’s home.
“There was some information around some potential booby-traps of a military nature. So the person we were dealing with was highly skilled and trained,” Veary told media.
The family has yet to come forward with comment on the developments around Volkwyn’s death but their last sentiments shared indicated that they had very little belief that their brother took his own life. VOC News could not get comment from the family at the time the article was published. VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)