26/08/2007 23:27 - (SA)
Naranda Nell, Beeld
Nelspruit - "You could see that the robber was shooting to kill."
That was the reaction of an eyewitness following the death of a young resident in an upmarket Nelspruit suburb who was hijacked and shot by two armed robbers while his wife looked on.
Garry Nightingale, 27, and his wife Nicky were returning from a family member's birthday party in separate cars to their home in Vuurvliegie Street, Steiltes at about 22:30 on Saturday night.
Nicky drove in first to where the robbers were apparently already waiting for them at their home in the posh suburb.
The head of the local branch of the CID, Gerrie Agenbag, said the robbers hijacked Nightingale's white Hilux bakkie shortly afterwards and fired two shots in the process.
The eyewitness, who lives nearby and who they had dropped off at his home moments earlier, saw the robbers shoot Nightingale.
The high school pupil, who does not want to be named, said the one robber shot Nightingale twice - once in the face and once in the back.
"The robber turned around calmly and jumped on the bakkie.
"You could see he wasn't afraid and not in a hurry at all. He shot to kill.
"He stared straight at me and drove off.
"I ran into our yard and hid, because I was afraid that they would follow me."
The boy said a Hi-Tech Security paramedic who arrived tried in vain to save Nightingale's life.
"The ambulance took a long time to arrive," the boy said.
It appeared as if Nicky's handbag with her cellphone and purse inside had also been stolen.
The owner of the house, John McIntyre, is a friend of the Nightingales who had let the place to them.
McIntyre said the Nightingales had been married a year in May.
They lived in Mozambique where Garry was in the Unitrans sugar-transporting industry and regularly worked in Tanzania.
"They moved to Nelspruit about two months ago."
Gaven Bullen, Nightingale's brother-in-law, was shocked and stunned.
"It's a horrible thing that has happened to our family. Nicky is still suffering from shock and you can see it hasn't yet sunk in."
The manager of Hi-Tech Security in Nelspruit, Jakes Strydom, said it had been difficult to get information from Nicky because she was still too shocked.
The bakkie was seen shortly afterwards on a farm road on the N4 to Pretoria and Hi-Tech had followed up the report.
Neither bakkie nor suspects have been traced as yet.