East London cemetery’s safety questioned after weekend incidents

JUNE 9, 2015

East London police have opened two cases of robbery and one of grave vandalising following two separate incidents at the town’s Cambridge Cemetery over the weekend.

According to the Daily Dispatch, the first case happened on Sunday when Aletta Marcus, who was visiting the grave of her daughter accompanied by her son-in-law, grandson and second daughter, was approached by a man demanding she give him money.

When she refused, he grabbed a pot plant from an adjacent grave and threw it in their direction, injuring her son-in-law.

Marcus told the paper that two men, brandishing knifes, suddenly appeared and that her attempt to scare them away by setting off her car’s alarm failed.

“One grabbed my daughter and held a knife to her throat and one chased my grandson and started beating him. I got into my car and drove straight towards him, making as if I would run him over so he would stop it.

“He did, and all of them backed off after that, but not before trying to damage my car,” she said, adding that the men continued to hurl objects at the vehicle while they ran away.

In the second incident, which reportedly took place on Saturday, the grave of former South African National Defence Force soldier, Victor Mlungwane, was dug up and his remains stolen.

“No security guards are on duty at the cemetery, which makes it difficult to find clues and determine when it exactly took place,” Police Spokesperson Mluleki Mbi said.

Mlungwane’s uncle has meanwhile indicated that the family could think of no reason as to why someone would want to vandalise a grave, but that the lack of damage to surrounding sites indicates that his was a target.

 

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