List of political deaths in police custody (non-security) 1984 – 1989

This is a list of deaths in politically related circumstances while the victim was in the custody of police, not prison authorities. They are deaths which occurred on arrest, during transport to a police station, during interrogation or while being held awaiting trial in a police lock up.

1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993

Year Date Name Affiliation Place of death Description
1984 15 July Ngalo, Johannes (26)   Parys Found dead in cell due to serious internal injuries.
  29 September Moleleke, Jacob (16)   Sebokeng Shot in head by policeman during altercation between police and other arrested youths in police van.
   5/7  November Masunyane, Anthony   Katlehong Police informed victim's family of death in custody after stayaway.
   11/19  November Maseko, Samson (19)   Katlehong Found at mortuary with terrible marks & bruises after reported arrest.
  22 November Ngwenya, Abel (31)   Daveyton Police reported epileptic fit as cause of death while pathologist indicated violence involved in death and family denied any history of epilepsy.
   Late 84/early 85 Korotsoane, Tatlheho (28)   Vereeniging Reported to have been in security detention, but police denied this.
1985 29 March Mvulane, Bheki (18)   Katlehong Brain injuries from alleged police violence while awaiting trial.
  5 May Mutsi, Sipho (20) COSAS Odendaalsrus Died during interrogation; post-mortem revealed head injuries and severe sjambok weals.
  6 May Raditsela, Andries (29) COSATU, CWIU Tsakane Died of head injuries after being violently confronted by police while producing documents to counter car theft accusations.
  3 July Muggels, Mzwandile (20) Karoo Youth Congress Steytlerville Died from gunshot wounds during arrest at memorial service.
  5 July Spogter, Johannes (13) Nephew of Muggels Steytlerville Found dead (attributed to head injuries) during routine cell visit.
  16 August Mokoena, Sonnyboy (24)   Pilgrim's Rest Allegedly found hanged in cell.
  16 August George, Thembalake (15) KWT Youth League King William's Town Mother found victim unresponsive at hospital with badly swollen face after arrested at a student gathering.
   18/19 August Ndzandze, Loyiso (20) KWT Youth League King William's Town Circumstances same as George above, except died a few days later.
  21 September Mbotya, Mbuyiselo (35) KWT Youth League/UDF King William's Town Died from head injuries.
  24 September Ndondo, Batandwa (22) SRC- University of Transkei Cala, Transkei Allegedly shot several times by police on the outskirts of Cala.
  18 October Ramalepe, Ngwako President SRC - Modjadji Teacher Training College Kgapane, Lebowa Assaulted by police at station and later dumped along a road.
  17 November Mogale, Meshack (16) Student Mamelodi East Sister, arrested with him at a night vigil for unrest victim, alleged he was kicked and sjambokked by police.
1986 1 April Poshoko, Joel (29) CCAWUSA Pretoria Allegedly assaulted by police during interrogation
  5 April Kutumela, Lucky (25) Journalist! AZAPO/ MWASA Mahwelereng, Lebowa Found dead in police cell with more than 40 sjambok weals.
  11 April Nchabeleng, Peter (59) President of Northern Transvaal UDF Schoonoord, Lebowa Allegedly tortured by police.
  12 April Ngomane, Eric (22) Student KaNgwane Police claim he was shot dead while trying to escape.
  19 April Mashego, Johannes (26)   Parys Police state he collapsed during interrogation; relatives reported extensive bruising and swollen face upon identifying the victim's body.
  26 July Stuurman, Mlungise (18)   Cradock Interrogated and then killed by 2 'unrest unit' members who were later sentenced to death for his murder.
  11 December Mapumolo, Matthews ANC Swaziland Accosted and shot at home by a group of armed men; abducted to South Africa while wounded, then died.
  13 December Mogotsi, Joseph Teacher Pretoria Assaulted after police forced car off the road.
  15 Decemeber Olifant, Benji (25)   Klerksdorp Allegedly shot while attempting to escape
1987 16 February Unknown youth (17) Soweto   Allegedly jumped from Casspir in an attempt to escape from custody.
  9 July Cele, Edwin (22) Lamontville Youth Congress Durban Shot by police while allegedly trying to pull the pin from a hand grenade.
  9 July Kriel, Ashley (20) Bonteheuwel Student Activist Athlone Police reported victim killed during arrest scuffle while post-mortem indicated victim shot in the back at 'point-blank' range.
  24 July Mntonga, Eric IDASA/SAAWU Mdantsane Killed by 6 Ciskei security officers at police cells.
  23 August Nyoka, Caiphus Student leader Daveyton Shot dead by police, execution-style, while raiding his father's home.
  4 November Marume, Ndiko   Sasolburg Died inside a police van while being transported to Sasolburg police station.
1988 20 March Kobe, Andile (22) George Youth/Civic Associations Sandkraal Beaten for at least 30 minutes by police in front of eyewitnesses.
  1 December Khoza, Amos (18)   Johannesburg Fell seven stories from a flat where he was allegedly escorting police to identify the place where he had made contact with an ANC member.
1989 23 January Dakuse, Patrick (36)   Khayelitsha Shot dead by police after allegedly tried to prime a hand grenade from an arms cache that he had taken the police to see.
  21 April Mbetheni, Dinana (21)   Alice Found in cell hanging from an electric wire tied to a bar.
  22 December Ruiters, Kevin (22)   Bellville South Mother found that his face had been 'badly bashed'

References:

  • Coleman, M. (ed)(1998). A Crime Against Humanity: analysing the repression of the apartheid state, Johannesburg: Human Rights Committee