“Hello, I am looking for the Rasta with the two girls? Want to meet for the camera!”…
This was all I gathered from a phone call I answered yesterday on my colleague’s mobile – Ashleigh Davids (21). On the day, she was accompanied by two other Live staff members – Theodore Africa (20) and Thulisa Sigwabe (21) on a photo shoot in Green Point, CPT.
Totally confused, I was thinking it was the wrong number. Quickly, I realised that this might be a robbery. My suspicions proved to be right, as my colleagues walked through our office doors minutes after answering Ashleigh’s phone.
Ashleigh Davids (Live Editor), Thulisa Sigwabe (Journalist) and Theodore Africa’s (Photographer) faces were blanked out. While busy on the shoot, 2 guys approached them and requested cell phones, camera’s and money. In shock, Theodore managed to get Ashleigh and Thulisa out of danger as he fought the skollies off. Soon after the struggle, the skollies took Theo’s R15000 camera and Thuli’s R99 cell phone that she had on her. Luckily, Ashleigh left hers in the office. A third guy approached them, wanting to help out. Or so they thought. He made a deal with Theo. “I will get your items back from those guys, if you buy them back from me.” Now, I understood what the phone call was all about.
I – Dewandre Lawrence (23) had to assist them because, I was a witness. In desperation, we rushed to Cape Town Police Station. With 2 police officers on service, there was a queue an hour long, and snaking outside of the police station. We turned around and decided to go to Sea Point Police Station. On arrival, we were instantly assisted by the many officers on duty. After filling out a case document and explaining our story, we were told that they can’t help us. “The robbery did not take place in our area” said one police officer. During this time, we were all frustrated because, we getting nowhere slowly. In the mean time, one of the skollies are waiting for us to call back and make arrangements for the exchange.
We were thankfully assisted by the crime stop unit (08600 10111) and then we contacted the skollies. “Come alone, meet me at Cubana – Waterkant, and bring R1500” were the instructions we received. Just one problem though, the Sea Point Offices could still not assisted us. We had to go all the way back to where we started – Cape Town Police Station.
After waiting for several hours, we finally managed to make arrangements with the skollies at a spot in town to do the exchange. Undercover police officers from CPT Police Station escorted Theo (who met with the skollie) and was able to make an arrest. The skollie came alone but, he only had Thuli’s cell phone with him. The Police Officers put him behind bars and further investigation is still in progress. Theo did not get his camera back (which was not insured) and we were left with a life time scar. This day brought to mind a lot of problematic issues we face in South Africa. Our safety, the reliability of our Police securities and the obvious, Bureaucracy.
We’re all safe. A bit traumatised from the event but, hopeful that the skollies will be caught.