Somerset Woman Victim of Police Road Rage

Woman tells of police road rage

A Somerset West sales rep has accused a police officer from the organised crime unit of trying to force her off the road when she didn't move over fast enough for him to pass.

Marihett Bredenkamp, who was on the N2 going towards Durbanville on Saturday, said she slowed slightly when she saw the police vehicle behind her.

"With me braking a bit, his car started to swerve because he was driving so fast, and obviously had to hit the brakes very hard."

She said the policeman, who had his wife and two young children in the car with him, then indicated she should pull over.

She said she wrote his call sign and number plate on her hand and called the 112 emergency number to get help when the officer insisted on following her into other lanes. He eventually forced her to stop.

She said he didn't identify himself as a police officer and asked: "What is your f***ing problem?"

Bredenkamp says he tried to open her locked door and grab her keys but he wasn't able to.
Another police vehicle with two uniformed officers stopped, but they declined to intervene. She said a third unmarked police car stopped with two detectives who were armed. "I did not feel safe to get out of my car."

Bredenkamp dialled the emergency number again and, while she was talking to the police one of the detectives started "pulling and pushing" her.

She said he grabbed her wrists and started manhandling her, only letting go after one of the other officers told him to. The officer who originally forced her to stop started writing down her details while leaning on her bonnet. She reversed her car and drove off.

Before long another police vehicle indicated she should stop. They were dog unit members.
When Bredenkamp told them what had happened, they suggested she report the matter, which she did.

Lieutenant-Colonel Andre Traut said because Bredenkamp had reported the matter it would receive a full investigation.

This article was originally published in The Cape Argus on September 05, 2010

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