A 53-year-old warrant officer was shot dead during a scuffle with a gun-wielding suspect in Tsolo in the Eastern Cape on Sunday.
According to police spokesperson Colonel Athlenda Mathe, the deceased officer was attending to a complaint after a community member had reported that an identified suspect had been recklessly pointing a firearm at him.
When the warrant officer arrived at the scene, the suspect continued wielding his firearm. A scuffle ensued which led to the police officer being fatally shot. During the scuffle, the suspect was also fatally wounded, Mathe said.
The suspect's firearm was found lying next to him and has been taken in for ballistic testing to determine whether it had been used in the commission of other violent crimes.
Police management condemned the attack and sent condolences to the family of the deceased officer.
"The loss of the member is a blow for the organisation because it happens at a time when we are still battling to come to terms with the loss of more than 400 members to the Covid-19 pandemic," national police commissioner General Khehla Sitole said.