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Man gets 14 years for burglary, attempted murder

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The Upington Regional Court handed down a 14-year direct imprisonment sentence to a 25-year-old man for burglary and attempted murder.

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THE NORTHERN Cape police have welcomed the 14-year direct imprisonment sentence that was handed down to Justin Jerome Koper, 25, for burglary and attempted murder by the Upington Regional Court.

Sergeant Omphile Masegela, a spokesperson for the Northern Cape police, stated that Koper was charged with two counts of burglary, attempted murder, illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition, and possession of suspected stolen goods.

The first incident occurred on the afternoon of June 8, 2023, when a burglary was reported at a residence in Askham. A 9mm pistol with ammunition was reported stolen.

The police responded to the scene and later that evening, gunshots were heard by Warrant Officer Abraham van Wyk, the Vispol commander of Witdraai SAPS, and Sergeant Bazil Ehlers, the forensic crime scene investigator, who were collecting evidence at the scene.

They immediately responded in the direction of where the gunshots were coming from and they found a 54-year-old man with a bullet wound to his right shoulder at a nearby residence.

It was discovered that the suspect had broken into the residence while the occupants were asleep and fired gunshots when confronted by the owner. The suspect had fled the scene before the police arrived.

The shooting victim was transported to a hospital for medical attention.

A manhunt was launched by the members of Witdraai SAPS, Upington High Way Patrol, Upington Crime Prevention and Upington LCRC. The suspect was arrested at his residence, where he was found in possession of the reported stolen goods, including the firearm and ammunition.

The provincial commissioner of the Northern Cape, Lieutenant-General Koliswa Otola, applauded the excellent work by Warrant Officer Van Wyk and Sergeant Ehlers as the first responders. She also commended the exceptional work of collecting evidence at all the crime scenes that linked the accused.

She further praised the investigating officer, Warrant Officer Mmoloki Riet, and the relevant units that played a role in securing the arrest of the armed suspect.

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