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André Botha, Beeld
Kimberley - A 16-year-old schoolboy from Kimberley had to watch as robbers shot his grandfather in cold blood over the weekend. He was then forced to open the safe in the same room.
It was the third time in about three years that the boy's family were victims of crime.
Neels Jansen, 61, from Roodia smallholdings outside Vanderbijlpark was shot at about 04:30 on Sunday while he was lying in bed next to his wife Irma. He had undergone an operation on Friday.
Leon Lotz, a farmer from Kimberley and son-in-law of the Jansens, on Monday explained what had happened. His wife Adele, and three children, Armand, 16, Charlize, 13, and Leoné, almost 2, had been visiting the Jansens while he remained on the family farm.
Opened the safe
The robbers broke in and tied up Gavin Coetzee, a jockey who rode racehorses for the Lotzes and who was also staying in the home. They pointed a pistol at Armand and forced him to walk to his grandparents' bedroom, where the safe was.
They shot Jansen in front of Armand, and then forced him to open the safe, said Lotz.
His mother-in-law called him while the incident was happening and screamed: "They have shot dead your father!"
"I can't tell you what went through my mind for the next hour until I heard my family was safe."
The robbers indecently touched the boy's grandmother while she lay asleep. "Fortunately they left the girls alone. Leoné was sleeping in bed with her mother and they didn't see her under the duvet."
He said Coetzee had hidden his cellphone under a pillow. He called Lotz once the robbers had gone. The men had left in Lotz's vehicle, which contained saddles and bridles, amongst other things.
Lotz said Coetzee had calmed the robbers down and had probably prevented them from raping the women.
"If it hadn't been for him, I don't know what would have happened. I also have much praise for the excellent service from the Vanderbijlpark police. It is in contrast with the poor service that I received in Kimberley when robbers burnt down my warehouse about three years ago and stole my revolver."
Lotz said Armand was badly traumatised. He was assaulted by schoolboys a while ago and also experienced the incident on his parents' farm, said Lotz.