Two armed robbers failed in their raid on Rhino Cash & Carry in the East London CBD on Tuesday night when they dropped their loot while making their getaway.
They also abandoned an R5 semi-automatic rifle nearby, said Warrant Officer Hazel Mqala.
In another incident, burglars who stole a safe with a pistol locked inside it from a Bonnie Doon home also appeared to have made a bungle. Police found the safe with the pistol still inside.
Mqala confirmed that despite gunshots being fired in the Rhino store heist, no one was injured.
Daily Dispatch photographer Michael Pinyana, who was on the scene soon after, said the road was cordoned off and there was a hive of police activity.
He saw 10 police and Buffalo City Metro law enforcement vehicles outside. The store’s pull-down metal door was riddled with bullet holes.
“The robbery took place at about 6.45pm. It is alleged that there were two suspects involved and several shots were fired by them. The two men stole an undisclosed amount of money but while they were running away they dropped it,” said Mqala.
“The police responded quickly to the robbery. However, the suspects ran on foot and managed to disappear into the taxi rank. An R5 rifle was found not far from the crime scene,” she said.
Mqala said no arrests had been made.
She said leads were being followed up which could lead to arrests.
Captain Mluleki Mbi said of the Bonnie Doon burglary: “The suspects are alleged to have broken into the house through a window and trap-door. During the break-in, suspects made off with a safe containing a firearm, passports and jewellery. They also took a jacket.
“Police received information about the stolen items hidden in the bushes below Fitzmaurice in Berea. Upon searching the bush police discovered a black refuse bag which contained a safe that had inside it a 9mm pistol and passports. No suspects were found.
“The complainant was contacted to come and identify his property which was then handed over to him.
“He was excited, relieved and full of praise for the job well done by SAPS Cambridge detectives.”