8 'most wanted' Westbury suspects arrested

The police's Kay Makhubele says the arrest of the suspects was possible through a collaboration between police and other law enforcement agencies.

FILE: The Westbury community mobilised against gang and drug-related crime, shutting down the area and marching to drug dealers' homes on 28 September 2018. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng police have arrested eight suspects on the most wanted list in Westbury on Friday night after police visibility was increased in the area.

Demonstrations erupted in Westbury after 45-year-old Heather Peterson was shot dead in the crossfire of a gun battle between alleged gang members last month.

Disgruntled community members took to the streets demanding police to intervene to curb the scourge of gangsterism in the area.

The police's Kay Makhubele says the arrest of the suspects was possible through a collaboration between police and other law enforcement agencies.

“Four of those eight suspects will face charges relating to the murder of a 31-year-old man who was killed in July 2018. The other four were arrested for possession and dealing in drugs.”

Earlier on Saturday, mourners gathered at the AFM Immanuel Newclare to say their final goodbyes Peterson. She was remembered for her love of children and the church.

Members of the community say Peterson’s death was not in vain, but has instead highlighted the plight of the residents of the area.

Many young children who were cared for by her couldn’t hold back the tears at church.

Speaking at the podium, church leader Bernadette Benson says Westbury will always remember Peterson’s life.

“The community and police fought against each other, no one fought for your [Peterson] safety while you were still alive. Westbury asked for the intervention of the state, but soon god almighty will intervene on behalf of the coloured people.”

Additional reporting by Katleho Sekhotho.

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)