Armed robbery and shootout at the Leaping Frog Shopping Centre
There was an armed robbery and shooting at the Leaping Frog Shopping Centre in Fourways, at around 6.40pm on Saturday evening, April 22, 2012.
It is alleged that eight armed men first hijacked a vehicle at the McDonalds on William Nicole, the suspects then went to the Leaping Frog Shopping Centre where they held up the pharmacy and assaulted the owner.
They then entered the Checkers and again held up the staff and customers; they broke open some of the cash boxes and robbed customers of their wallets, car keys and cellphones. As the suspects were fleeing the scene, they split into different directions in the car park, they then hijacked several vehicles.
An off duty paramedic heard the commotion and while phoning for help, the suspects drove passed and opened fire, fortunately he was not injured.
A victim, who was driving around the circle at the entrance to the Leaping Frog, saw the suspects running towards him with their firearms drawn as well as the police approaching. He jumped out of his vehicle and the suspects got in and started driving away, police gave chase and a shootout ensured, the victim hid behind a police vehicle for safety.
A police vehicle was shot at and an officer was slightly injured, a piece of shrapnel flew up when a bullet hit his vehicle, cutting his nose.
RSS Control Room received a panic signal from the guards working at Leaping Frog Shopping Centre in Lonehill. RSS provides Armed Response to a guarding company working in the complex. Upon arrival at the shopping centre parking lot, the RSS Reaction Vehicle came under fire and the Reaction Officer immediately called for backup while returning fire. The RSS vehicle was shot four times, thankfully the guard was uninjured.
RSS Control Room sent three other Reaction Vehicles as well as the Reaction Field Manager and the RSS Medical team.
Waiters from TSG heard the commotion and immediately closed the doors of the restaurant and grabbed the children and took them to the back to keep them safe. Patrons dinning at TSG told the owner they were very impressed with the waiters and the way they handled the situation.
Three of the suspects were arrested at the centre, there was a huge police presence including the Air Wing, Organised Crime Unit, Tactical Response, Detectives, a full deployment from Douglasdale SAPS, security officers, paramedics from Emer-G-Med and the K9 Unit at the scene.
Douglasdale Victim Support was on scene councilling the traumatised victims, one lady collapsed from shock and was taken to hospital.
Several others were also hospitalised due to shock.