Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Paralysed woman's dog poisoned

Graeme Hosken

July 20 2009 at 07:29AM

Days after Pat Beckmann was paralysed by a robber's bullet, her family dog has been poisoned.

The family woke up on Sunday to find their dog, Jacey, battling to breathe in the lounge of their Constantia Park home, metres from where Beckmann was shot.

Beckmann was shot and paralysed on Wednesday last week as she ran to help her husband, Colin, who was wrestling with two gunmen in their garden.

Beckmann's daughter, Julie van Tonder, said when the family woke up, they found Jacey, a cross between a German shepherd and a ridgeback, lying on the floor.

"She was battling to breathe and every time she stood up she would collapse. It was terrible," she said.

She said they found that Jacey had vomited all over the garden.

Van Tonder said the police believed that their dog had been poisoned with the pesticide Aldicarb, commonly known as "one step".

Van Tonder said they were terrified by what had happened.

"It is clear that whoever shot my mom did this to our dog and really wants to get into our house. They think nothing of killing, maiming and terrorising. They will do anything and everything to get what is ours, but for what?" she asked.

Van Tonder said the perpetrators were ruling their lives through fear.

"They are dictating how we live. They are ruining our lives and are in complete control.'

"It feels as though we have no say over how we live and there is nothing anyone can do about it," she said.

Asked whether they would consider leaving their home, Van Tonder said: "This is our house and we are not going anywhere. The only time we would move is if it would improve mom's life."

Pat, who was still in the intensive-care unit at Pretoria East Hospital, would undergo an operation tomorrow to reconstruct a finger damaged by a bullet.

This article was originally published on page 1 of Pretoria News on July 20, 2009


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