UPDATE: Mayor condemns killing of TMPD officer in Centurion

TMPD Constable Mento Yanta was shot and killed during an armed robbery in Lyttelton Centurion. Photo: Facebook.

Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga has strongly condemned the recent killing of a law enforcement officer in Centurion.

Constable Mendo Yanta was shot dead last week on Wednesday evening after walking in on an armed robbery.

Yanta entered the KFC fast food branch on the corner of Cantonments and Cradock streets in Lyttelton while three armed men were busy robbing the store.

He was shot dead and the suspects stole his duty pistol and fled the scene in a Hyundai i10 with about R7 000 in cash.

Msimanga said the metro was shocked by Yanta’s killing.

“I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to the family, friends and loved ones as well as his colleagues at the TMPD for their loss.”

The mayor said Yanta’s workday was almost done when he passed by the store.

Msimanga said during a drug and crime operation last week, he saw first-hand the “precarious and, sometimes, life-threatening situations law enforcement officers are often confronted with”.

“This officer’s death will not be in vain and we will intensify our day-to-day crime-fighting activities.”

Msimanga appealed to anyone with information on the incident to contact the police or the metro police on 012-358-7095/6 or 012-358-2124.

“We will work very hard with the police to apprehend the culprits and ensure that they are brought to book,” said Msimanga.

The metro police were unable to comment by the time of going to print.

KFC South Africa said it was shaken by the armed robbery.

“Armed robbers entered the restaurant and demanded cash and unfortunately fatally shot a customer as they exited, no one else was injured,” said KFC spokesperson Thabisa Mkhwanazi.

Mkhwanazi said the police were investigating.

“We can assure all our clients we are committed to supporting the police in their investigation and we will continue to provide them with any information they require.”

She said staff members had received trauma counselling and this would continue for as long as required.

“The safety of our clients and team members is of utmost importance to us and we are deeply saddened by this tragic incident. Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to the family of the deceased.”

Similar robberies were reported in the Pretoria CBD recently when two pizza fast food outlets were targeted in one weekend by robbers in a Toyota Quantum or Nissan minibus, according to police.

Police offered the following safety tips to fast food operators and store owners:

– CCTV cameras are an important deterrent to crime.

– If possible, hire security personnel and make sure they are visible.

– Keep access to tills limited; use a protective (preferably bulletproof) glass screen and lockable doors to ensure that nobody gains unauthorised access to tills.

Do you have more information about the story? Please send us an email to [email protected] or phone us on 083 625 4114.

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Jason Milford

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