Westbury community protests over gang violence

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Residents of Westbury in the West of Johannesburg have taken to the streets to protest, blocking off several entrances and exits to the area after a woman was shot dead and her child seriously injured after being caught in the cross-fire of an ongoing gang war.

The community is protesting over the high rate of drug-related crime that has plagued them for many years.

Concerned resident Shahiem Ismail said, “For the past three years we have been asking for sufficient deployment in terms of the shootings and killings in this area and for certain units to be established such as the gang unit, firearms unit and those types of units that can really help us to control the violence.”

“It will also be the right of the community to voice their anger in terms of what happened yesterday for a mother to be killed like that on the streets. It is not acceptable, it cannot be accepted in any community. You know it could have been avoided if police could act sufficiently after all the rally’s and meetings and marches we had,” added Ismail.

Meanwhile, police have arrested a second suspect believed to have taken part in the shootout in which the woman was killed.

A first suspect was taken to hospital under guard on Thursday after he was wounded.

Three men allegedly took part in the exchange of fire.

Police spokesperson Lungelo Dlamini said, “Whilst police were investigating the incident the second suspect was arrested at the hospital and he was taken into custody and at this stage we have two suspects that have been arrested. One is under police guard at the hospital and we are still looking for the third one.”