Warning Shot Fired, Berserk Man Still Smashed ConCourt Windows

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The man who went berserk and smashed windows with a hammer at the Constitutional Court in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, on Wednesday morning ignored a police warning shot, it has emerged.

Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola, has strongly condemned the attack on the Constitutional Court.

Police said a warning shot was fired, but the suspect continued to break the windows even after being ordered to stop.

The 36-year-old man who appeared to have mental challenges was eventually arrested and is expected to appear in court.

While Minister Lamola has commended the police for the swift arrest, some observers have cautioned the use of armed law enforcers to deal with mental health issues.

“The site of the Constitutional Court is a historical landmark as it represents our struggle for freedom,” said Lamola.

“It was specifically designed to reflect the values of our new constitutional democracy and Nelson Mandela himself called the building ‘a beacon of light, a symbol of hope and celebration’.

“The Constitutional Court is a powerful symbol of our Constitutional dispensation, supremacy of the Constitution and the Rule of Law in our country.

 “Any person who attacks the Constitutional Court – or any other of our democratic institutions for that matter – is attacking democracy and what it represents.”

The arrested suspect faces charges of malicious damage to property.