Sunday, 10 January 2010

Man kills robber, rescues neighbours

January 03 2010 at 03:39PM

An Alberton man and former traffic cop shot dead a robber to save his neighbours from robbery and rape on Sunday morning.

Louis Venter, 43, shot dead a robber and held two others until police arrived after the men robbed his neighbour, Deon Holtzhausen, 42, and his family.

Venter praised the involvement of his son and Holtzhausen's daughter in stopping the robbers.

"The kids should get the glory for this. I only did what was necessary so that nobody got hurt," the former Northwest Traffic Department senior provincial inspector told Sapa on Sunday.

'Perhaps we'll become friends after what happened today'
Venter resigned from the traffic police in 2009 and moved to Alberton, where he operates a woodworking business.

Holtzhausen said they did not know each other well, since the Venters only moved to the area a few months ago.

"Perhaps we'll become friends after what happened today," he said.

Three armed men entered the Holtzhausen's home shortly after midnight on Sunday morning. They tied up Holtzhausen, his wife and two friends.

Holtzhausen's daughter, 16, noticed something was wrong and phoned her friend, Dewald Venter, 17, who lives next door.

"After she spoke with him, they stormed her room and tied her up too," Louis Venter said.

Dewald then woke his father and told him what had happened.

"If it weren't for the kids' quick action, things could have gone terribly wrong," Venter said.

Venter and his son scouted the Holtzhausens' house and saw the men moving around inside.

"I then sent my son to phone the police and help them get inside, partly also to get him out of harm's way," Venter said.

"I first walked around the house and looked through the windows. Then I saw the back door was open," he said.

Venter decided to wait for the police at the Holtzhausens' back door. "But then women started to scream and I decided to go in. I had just gone inside when I found the three men," he said.

One robber was armed with a pistol, while the other two only had screwdrivers. The armed robber was closest to Venter.

"I warned them and they ran to their captives. The armed robber then pointed the pistol to one lying on the ground and I did what was necessary," he said.

Venter fired one shot and hit the robber in the head. The other two fled to the main bedroom, where he guarded them until police arrived.

Holtzhausen confirmed that the men were about to rape his wife when Venter confronted them.

"For me it wasn't simply a house robbery," he said.

The robbers were about to make off with jewellery, watches, cash, electronic equipment, food and alcohol in Holtzhausen's car.

"I watched them out of the corner of my eye," he said. "They sat on the kitchen floor and shared the money between them like they were playing cards."

Holtzhausen will lay additional charges of attempted rape and assault with police in the week.

Germiston police spokesman Captain Steady Nawa confirmed that the two other men, aged 38 and 30, would appear in the Germiston Magistrate's Court on Monday for house robbery. - Sapa


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