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Would-be ‘robber’ complains to cops

Fishermen and beachgoers are urged to be vigilant and aware of possible dangers lurking at Macassar Beach.

The warning was issued by Macassar police, and follows after a fisherman from Mitchell’s Plain, who frequents the beach often, fell prey to armed robbers.

Three suspects were arrested in connection with the incident, which occurred last Monday 23 July. One of the armed robbers, allegedly wounded by the fisherman, visited the police station to report the matter shortly after it took place.

The fisherman, Mogamat Salie Gamaldien (55), recalled pulling up onto the beach about 19:30. He said that he at first decided to wait for the tide to turn, but changed his mind afterwards.

As Gamaldien put his phone down he noticed movement in his side-view mirror.

“As I opened the door and stepped out, a man appeared from behind the vehicle,” he recalled. “He started swearing at me and I immediately had my guard up.

“I got hold of my firearm – carried for protection – in the side door. Noticing the firearm, the knife-wielding man stabbed my brand-new wheels, deflating them. While holding him at gunpoint, I could tell he wasn’t afraid.

“He still came at me with the knife. With him at close range and the gun aimed at his chest, I pulled the trigger. Nothing. I believe it was a dud bullet.

“This did not deter him, he just kept on coming. As I lowered the firearm to fire a shot in the sand to show him it is indeed real, I shot him in the foot.”

Gamaldien said the wounded robber jumped up, threw the knife at him and ran off. At the same time he noticed two other men making off too.

“I fired another shot into the ground to scare them off and alerted police,” he said.

According to a police spokesperson, three suspects were arrested after a wounded man lodged a complaint at the police station, the man included.

The suspects, aged 19, 20 and 22, appeared in the Somerset West Magistrates’ Court on charges of attempted robbery last Wednesday, 25 July. The case was postponed to yesterday, 1 August. At the time of going to print the court outcome was still unknown.

Gamaldien said he has been fishing at Macassar beach for the past eight years, often alone, and the incident with the suspected armed robber happened so quickly.

“I was cool and calm, and acted instinctively,” he added.

He implored other fishermen and beachgoers to be vigilant, aware of their surroundings at all times and to remain in groups during visits to the beach, especially at night.

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