The couple was filing domestic dispute forms at the Parkview Police Station in Johannesburg when the South African man first shot his wife, then himself, in what amounts to a murder suicide.
When Gabriel da Silva, 47, arrived at the police station, he was apparently searched and no weapon was found at that stage. However, da Silva asked the officers on duty if he could fetch his reading glasses from his car. On his return to the police station he shot his wife, 45-year-old Lana Pereira Marques in the head.
The South African then allegedly pointed the gun at the police officers currently on duty in the station. While the officers took cover behind a desk, da Silva turned the gun on himself.
The incident occurred in the upmarket Johannesburg suburb of Parkview at 2:50 a.m. on Tuesday. While Johannesburg has a bad reputation as one of the most dangerous South African cities, Parkview has reportedly seen a total of only three murders during the whole of 2014. The suburb is a leafy and elite area, with expensive homes and schools, an upmarket shopping street as well as several pleasant outdoor cafés and restaurants.
The South African police had received reports of a domestic dispute and when the officers visited the couple’s home, both parties were apparently “calm and cooperative.” The attending officers categorized the incident as a “minor quarrel.”
According to Sergeant Lloyd Ramavha, spokesman for the Parkview police station, the officers then brought the couple into the station to complete a domestic dispute registration form. The couple both traveled to the police station in their own cars as apparently at the time, da Silva asked the officers if he use his own car, as he would be later staying at his sister’s house.
The Telegraph reports it was while the couple was completing the forms that the man asked the officers if he could collect his reading glasses from his car. However, what he fetched from the vehicle was a small, concealed revolver with which, according to Ramavha, he “shot the female in the head at point-blank range without notice.”
While Ramavha was quoted as saying the wife was shot in the head at point-blank range, another South African police spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Lungelo Dlamini, was quoted by News 24 as saying da Silva shot his wife in the upper body. Dlamini said that it was while police officers were attempting to disarm the man that he also shot himself in his upper body.
Reportedly the police station was closed Tuesday while a forensic team concluded their work. According to Ramavha, five South African police officers, on duty at the time of the incident, have been offered counseling.
Friends of the South African couple said they were very private people. One friend noted that they did not know of any issues between the couple and they had always appeared loving to each other. However recent events did arouse suspicion of issues between them.
— Katherine Fei (@KfCaxton) January 7, 2015
In other South African news, the Inquisitr notes some controversy has arisen over the fact that President Jacob Zuma is working with the Holy Roman Church to update a translation of the Bible in the isiZulu language, a process not everyone is happy about.
[Image: Crime scene tape CC by-SA Yumi Kimura]