From the news desk

Slain smash-and-grab teen was repeat offender

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Police say the teenager who was killed by a female motorist after he tried to rob her was a known criminal who once tried to stab a cop.

Siphesihle Mkunqwana, 16, was shot and killed along Jakes Gerwel Drive and Bluegum Avenue in Bonteheuwel on Monday afternoon when he and two of his accomplices smashed the window of a vehicle.

Witnesses claim the teen snatched the driver’s handbag through the broken window.

The woman, believed to be an Italian national, shot him, while his two friends ran off.

The Langa teenager’s family has expressed their anger at the woman, who had been visiting her sick mother in Langebaan, saying she should have fired a warning shot first.

Ouma Nozukile Mkunqwana said her grandson “had mixed with the wrong crowd”.

On Wednesdday, Metro police’s deputy chief, Yolando Faro, revealed the teenager was no angel and had clashed with the law before.

In September last year, Mkunqwana was spotted in a smash-and-grab incident on the corner of Jakes Gerwel Drive and Jakkelsvlei Avenue in Bonteheuwel, close to the location where he died.

Sergeant Sololo and Constable Mhlahlo were alerted and they found him in possession of the stolen bag and its contents.

Faro said: “When the two cops approached him, the suspect resisted arrest and attacked Sergeant Sololo with a knife.

“But Constable Mhlahlo reacted quickly and shot the teen in the hip.”

He was arrested and was placed in a reformatory school for three months.

Faro said after seeing the deceased’s photo in the Daily Voice, they compared it to their suspect and found it to be a match.

“Metro police had a look at the picture of the deceased smash-and-grabber that was taken at the scene on Monday February 29,” explained Faro.

“He confirmed that it is the same person who tried to attack one of our officers and who Constable Mhlahlo shot in September 2015 after they caught him smashing and grabbing from a white Mercedes on Jakes Gerwel Drive.

“This suspect is well known for this type of crime and we urged the investigating officer to visit Eagle Eye and link the other cases observed via the CCTV system.”

She added that on Monday when he died, the suspect had been wearing the same pants he wore in September when he got arrested.

Meanwhile, support continues to pour in for the unidentified shooter.

Writing on the Daily Voice Facebook page, reader Aqeelah Abrahams said: “I take my hat off to that lady for acting so quick. Yes, it is wrong to take a life. But enough is enough. I just hope our justice system doesn’t fail this woman.”

[Source: Daily Voice/IOL]

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