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The City of Joburg (COJ) has found that the Johannesburg
Metro Police Department (JMPD) officials who were captured forcefully
restraining a drunk driver – to obtain blood samples – in a viral video were
“acting within the course and scope of their duties”.”Despite no formal complaint being received against any
of the officers involved, I immediately instructed an internal investigation
into what had transpired before, during and after the part of the incident
which was captured on video, ensuring our residents that any wrongdoing would
be acted upon,” MMC for Public Safety, Michael Sun said in a statement on
Sunday.”From our internal investigation it was found that the
JMPD officers involved had acted within the course and scope of their duties.
There will, therefore, be no disciplinary actions taken unless any further
evidence contradicting these findings come forward,” he added.This comes after the video showing a woman screaming inside
an office with some people in uniform around her raised criticism on the way
the test was done.The COJ acknowledged that the video was disturbing, however,
claimed that their findings following an investigation painted a different
picture.”In an effort to combat drunken driving, we could not
succeed if we did not enforce and uphold law and order. This, at times, also
means compelling persons to follow a lawful instruction, ultimately, for the
protection of all residents,” Sun explained.COJ investigations revealed that the driver in question was
stopped at a road block by JMPD and the Douglasdale police on July 5, 2019
where a breathalyser test showed the driver was over the legally allowed limit.The driver was subsequently taken to the Douglasdale Police
Station in a JMPD patrol vehicle for further processing. This is when she used
her phone to try and get assistance.”On arrival at the Douglasdale SAPS, the driver was
taken to a suitable facility where a nursing sister was on duty to assist with
drawing blood. The driver became emotional and refused to co-operate.”Shortly after, two males arrived at the police
station, identifying themselves as the boyfriend of the driver and a friend.
The two friends initially tried to reason with the driver to cooperate but were
not successful, they were at that stage asked to leave the room,” Sun
explained.A JMPD officer removed a firearm from one of the friends for
safety reasons.An hour passed and the driver still refused to cooperate
with the nursing sister who would be drawing the blood samples.”The JMPD officer, in complying with relevant laws, in
particular Section 64F of the South African Police Services Act of 1995,
Section 36 of the Criminal Procedures Act of 1977 and Section 65 of the National
Road Traffic Act of 1996 which it is stipulated that, “No person shall
refuse that a specimen of blood, or a specimen of breath, be taken of him or
her”, had no other alternative but to use appropriate and minimal force to
restraint the driver so the nursing sister could withdraw the blood sample.”The restraining was necessary for the police officers
to perform their duty and also to ensure the safety of those in the room as
well as the driver’s own safety while the nurse withdraws blood,” Sun
added.The driver signed off the relevant documentation and was
detained for driving under the influence of alcohol.”Neither the driver nor any person sustained any
injuries during the process. To date, JMPD have not yet received any formal
complaints against the officers involved in this incident,” Sun concluded.

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