It was a bittersweet moment in time when SAPS Malvern’s brave heart, Warrant Officer Hemraj ‘Trevor’ Raghoonundan received a much lauded community accolade at the Christian Revival Centre in Chatsworth on Sunday, 3 June.
W/O Raghoonundan received a Certificate of Bravery together with a monetary award from Dr Paul Lutchman of the Christian Revival Centre. The member from SAPS Malvern was given this honour for going beyond the call of duty on the fateful morning during the hijacking incident that resulted in the passing on of the brave Sadia Sukraj.
Malvern SAPS Corporate Communications Officer, W/O Radhika Marimuthu said, “Being in sync with who he is and the organisation he represents, W/O Raghoonundan is always vigilant. During the removal of the refuse he heard gunshots and then saw a bullet riddled vehicle race past his gate.
“The police officer’s built-in antenna then came to the fore as the vehicle turned, went past his gate and crashed into the bank. A man then alighted, carrying a female’s handbag and began fleeing. W/O Raghoonundan immediately identified himself as a policeman and asked the suspect to stop.
The suspect did not heed the warning and the brave officer without a thought for his own safety pursued the suspect on foot.
“With community members picking up on the foot chase, the determined officer stay on the chase , hot on the heels of the suspect added W/O Marimuthu. The long arm of the law proved to be the more formidable and within a short while W/O Raghoonundan had caught up with the suspect and arrested him.
“With the community in toe the suspect was led back by W/O Raghoonundan back to the crashed vehicle where the other suspect who was already deceased was found.
“For W/O Raghoonundan the spot of the crash evoked bitter sweet memories for him. It was the spot where his three year old twin sister had been run down whilst crossing the road to buy a cone,” added W/O Marimuthu.
SAPS Malvern is also renowned for its successful high speed chases of suspects and together with the rest of the members W/O Raghoonundan is a pivotal feature in this. He is known for his zero tolerance attitudes to crime and criminals which has resulted in many a hapless suspect being put behind bars.
W/O Raghoonundan has on many occasions as that fateful morning, put his life on the line and has flown the flag of The South African Police Service proudly victorious, added W/O Marimuthu .
The Station Commander of SAPS Malvern Lt-Col Valarine Reddy expressed her delight at the accolade bestowed on W/O Raghoonundan by the community. She further stated that she is very proud of her members at SAPS Malvern for their dedication to duty and W/O Raghoonundan’s bravery and commitment to fighting crime is indicative of this.