Residents living in fear after Hawston shooting

A 26-year-old was released due to a lack of evidence shortly before his scheduled appearance in court.

FILE: Blue police lights. Picture: sxc.hu

HERMANUS - Some Hawston residents say they live in fear of further shootings after a suspect, initially believed to be linked to the fatal gun attack at a biker rally, was released.

The 26-year-old was released due to a lack of evidence shortly before his scheduled appearance in the Hermanus Magistrate Court yesterday.

A senior police officer in Hermanus, Rounita Burgess, was critically wounded in the shooting on Saturday.

Her daughter Randy and family friend Rudin Salo, were both killed, while two others were wounded.

The 48-year-old is fighting for her life after she was shot in the head and chest.

At the end of a busy access road into Hawston, the modest homes of two of the victims are eerily quiet.

Neighbours can be seen cowering behind half-drawn curtains, hesitant to speak to media.

One of the residents said potential witnesses are likely to be too scared to testify following the brazen attack on Burgess.

"People here are scared because they can also get shot. Look, if they shot a cop anyone can get shot."

Police say they will not speculate about possible motives for the shooting, but residents are convinced the incident relates to an illegal abalone deal.

Meanwhile, Hermanus police say they will leave no stone unturned during their investigation.

Officers involved in the case said they were determined to bring justice for one of their own.

"This will not break us. In fact it gives us further motivation to bring the perpetrator to book."

Burgess was highly regarded for her leadership and honourable character.

Police are now following new leads to pick-up the investigation.

They are not speculating about possible motives for the shooting.