CRADOCK – A 72-hour activation plan yielded positive results after a 19-year-old man was arrested after he went on a two day shooting spree in Cradock.

On Wednesday 7 September 2022 at about noon, police were summoned to a complaint of murder at a farm outside Cradock. At the scene, police found the body of Eva Smit (39), with a gunshot wound in the upper body.

Police followed up some leads, which resulted to the implementation of a 72-hour activation plan, and a hunt for the suspect resumed.

The following day, 8 September 2022 at about 19:30, police received a complaint of shooting on the N10 towards Middleburg. At the scene, a truck driver sustained several gunshot wounds in the upper body and was rushed to hospital.

Preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect allegedly involved in shooting of the truck driver was the same who fatally shot Eva Smit. The search was intensified and expanded to cover a vast area, from various SAPS units with the assistance from community groups and private security companies, which volunteered their services, and worked around the clock.

On Friday afternoon, 9 September 2022, the tracing and tracking teams including police tracker dogs cornered and apprehended the suspect in a water slope about 20 kilometres outside Cradock. Police also recovered a firearm, and a truck’s key in his possession. A 19-year-old suspect is due to appear in the Cradock magistrate’s court on Monday, 12 September 2022 on charges of murder, attempted murder , possession of stolen firearm and ammunition with an additional charge of theft.

Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Nomthetheleli Mene has welcomed the arrest and praised several stakeholders for their dedication, which resulted in the arrest. “Your efforts surely saved lives, which could have been lost during a frenzy shooting spree”, added Lt Gen Mene.

Source: South African Police Service