Warrant Officer Shaun Bardien was one of three recipients of the Member of the Month award at Cape Town Central police station last week after
he helped recover the stolen property of a woman who had been robbed at knife-point by a taxi driver in June.
According to Warrant Officer Bardien, the woman had taken a taxi from Maitland at around 10pm. The only other passenger disembarked in Salt River and she was left alone with the driver who pulled out a knife, held it to her neck and told her to give him everything.
The driver took her rings, watch, chain and cellphone, and some money in her wallet – all to the value of about R20 000.
As the driver slowed down to park the taxi, the woman jumped out and fell to the ground, and while she lay there, he tried to reverse over her.
When she moved out of the way, he drove away.
The woman, who spoke to the CapeTowner on condition of anonymity, said it all happened very fast.
“I wasn’t hurt – he just held a knife to my neck and after I gave him everything, he didn’t hurt me. I only sustained some bruises when I jumped but it was very traumatising.”
She went to the police station the next day to open a case, but had little hope of ever getting her things back.
Warrant Officer Bardien said after he received the case three days later he was able to trace the owner of the taxi who was shocked to hear about the complaint against his driver.
Warrant Officer Bardien was then able to apprehend the driver, who was charged with aggravated robbery, and he recovered the woman’s watch.
After further investigation, the woman’s cellphone and some of the other belongings were found in the Athlone area.
Warrant officer Bardien personally delivered the belongings to the woman.
The woman said Warrant Officer Bardien was amazing from the beginning.
“I had no confidence in the police, and I was a victim. I didn’t want to follow through and I didn’t want to speak to the police. I was bitter. But he took over and made me feel like I could trust him – like I had someone looking out for me. The Member of the Month award is an initiative of the Cape Town Central community police forum, to give recognition to members who go above the call of duty.
Police officers are nominated by the community, vetted and then given an award of excellence and a voucher from the CPF.
The award can also go to those who don’t wear uniform, and the CPF has a quarterly award for any community member who has gone the extra mile for their community.
Warrant Officer Bardien made news when he tracked down Vuyolwethu Mgemane and his accomplice, Nomfundo Mtshawu, who was found guilty of killing former Naspers financial director, Eric Wiese at his Higgovale home in 2017. (CBD cop’s tale of murder, CapeTowner, August 31, 2017).
The other recipients were Sergeant Frans and Warrant Officer Du Plessis, who were recognised for making 86 arrests last month.