30/08/2008 08:03 - (SA)
Johannesburg - A couple returning home from a holiday was accidentally shot and wounded by police in Alberton, Gauteng police said on Friday.
Superintendent Eugene Opperman said the couple walked into a robbery at their Meyersdal home on Thursday night about 23:00.
At the time of their arrival, five armed men had tied up their son and took turns to rape their daughter.
The couple saw that something was wrong in their garage.
They found the car loaded with appliances, and while still in the garage the robbers opened fire on them, Opperman said.
During the commotion someone pressed the panic button, a security company phoned the house, heard a woman screaming and alerted the police.
Two groups of police officers went to the scene. On arrival the first group was shot at, and while taking cover, a car drove at high speed from the garage towards the second group of police officers. The car had its lights off.
"Police opened fire on it, thinking it was the robbers fleeing. After the car stopped the couple was found wounded inside the car."
The couple in their 40s were taken to hospital where they were reported to be in stable conditions on Friday.
Opperman said the robbers scaled the wall and broke a window to gain access to the house at about 21:00.
Once inside they tied up the son, in his 20s, and ransacked the house. His sister, also in her 20s, walked in on the robbery and was also tied up and gang-raped.
Police recovered a stolen 9mm pistol, clothes belonging to the suspects and some of the goods stolen from the house.
The robbers scaled the wall, fled into a nearby koppie and disappeared, he said.
No arrest had been made.