Johannesburg – The family of a disabled teenager who was allegedly gunned down by police in Eldorado Park have accused the SAPS of trying to cover up what they are calling a cold-blooded murder.
Nathaniel Julius died at the Baragwanath Hospital on Wednesday night following a shooting just a few meters away from his home.
His family says police said he was wounded in a shootout between gang members and officers but the community has disputed this.
The community says the teenager was shot when he was unable to answer questions from police.
Cyril Brown, Julius’ uncle, said he gave the teenager a haircut just hours before he was shot.
“He can’t talk at all, so when he sees me he says ‘C…cut’. After I cut his hair he went on to his Mom and said ‘mooi’. I spoke to him and said bye-bye, and he still said ‘awe’ for me,” said Brown.
Brown added that he’s heard police accused Julius of being part of a gang, but he said that was impossible because Julius had down syndrome.
“They say he was caught in a crossfire because there was gang-related fights here at the flats; there is nothing like that, there was no gangs. After they shot him they probably phoned the guys here to say what happened, and the other van came to pick up the shell casings and they didn’t even put that police [tape].”
The community is planning to hold a peaceful march in the streets of Eldorado Park on Saturday, calling for a complete overhaul of the local police station’s management.