Suspect flees court, leading cops on frantic chase through F/town
There was high drama at Francistown Magistrates Court this Tuesday when a threat-to-kill suspect who had just been remanded in custody made a dramatic rush for freedom.
As he walked slowly back from the dock, showing a sudden turn of speed that Isaac Makwala would have been proud of, 20-year-old Michael Ponatshego bolted from the courtroom, sprinting past startled police officers, journalists and lawyers alike.
With the cops on his trail, the fleet-footed suspect made it as far as the underground parking, where, to his dismay, he found the exit locked.
Ponatshego’s escape attempt did not end there, however. He hastily climbed the gate, narrowly evading the desperate lunges of chasing officers.
He then sprinted all the way to the bus rank, where his luck ran out and, huffing and puffing, the boys in blue finally caught him up.
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The unemployed youth was in court accused of threatening his ex-girlfriend, 29-year-old Modiro Moetsanagape by text message at Gerald Estates.
Sent on Friday, the warning reportedly read, “I m gonna burn all of you in the house tonight. I’m gonna kill all of you.”
The Investigating Officer, Mathews Sebetela also informed court Ponatshego has two pending cases involving the same complainant, one in which he allegedly assaulted her younger brother and another where he is accused of chopping her new boyfriend with a spade.
“We are to take the gadgets that were allegedly used to send the messages to the relevant authorities for analysis,” added Sebetela.
Although his attorney, Kesegofetse Molosiwa pleaded for bail, noting his client is a Motswana whose home address is known to the police, Ponatshego was told he would have to wait until Thursday for bail ruling.
Seemingly unable to face two nights behind bars, it was then that Ponatshego made his mad, and ultimately unsuccessful dash for freedom.
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He is due back in court on 27 January, when the cops will surely be keeping a closer eye on him. A case of escaping from the police will be added to his charges.