Two KwaZulu-Natal police constables have been charged with murder after they allegedly shot and killed the "wrong man" in Ladysmith, the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) said on Wednesday.
IPID spokesperson Moses Dlamini told News24 that the two officers were arrested shortly after the incident on January 10.
"They were arrested by IPID members. They were released on R2 000 bail each when they appeared in court on January 11," he said.
Dlamini said investigations were continuing.
The two officers, stationed at Normandien police station, stand accused of the murder of Muzi Mtshali.
Mtshali was at his family homestead when the two policemen - only identified as constables P Nkosi and P Mpanza - arrived on foot, and in civilian clothing, Dlamini said.
They were looking for Mtshali's relative who is a suspect in an assault with grievous bodily harm case, said Dlamini.
He said the officers were accompanied by the victim of the assault, who had opened the case against Mtshali's relative.
There were people standing in the yard when they arrived, according to Dlamini.
"The two policemen were armed with firearms. When the deceased and the other people who were in the yard saw two men approaching them in possession of firearms, they started fleeing. The two policemen chased after them and fired shots towards their direction. Unfortunately one man was shot dead. It turns out the man they shot was not the person they were looking for," said Dlamini.
He said they would appear again in the area's local Magistrate's Court on February 25.