Scenes at Oriental Plaza in Johannesburg were dramatic after a shooting occurred, involving armed suspects and police.
Oriental Plaza shooting: Here’s what we know
The shopping mall in Fordsburg was a scene taken out of a Hollywood action thriller on Tuesday afternoon. While details around the incident are still murky, at this time, sources close to the situation have confirmed that the Oriental Plaza shooting was in connection with the reported robbery of Regal Jewellers.
It’s unclear if the robbers managed to make off with any stolen items at this stage. However, we were reliably informed that in their exit attempt, armed robbers faced off with private security, Johannesburg Metro Police Department (JMPD) respondents as well as South African police.
Still, even with this team of law enforcement officials, the suspects managed to make it out of the shopping mall in five getaway vehicles. Fordsburg police have yet to issue a statement with more information on the Oriental Plaza shooting but our understanding is that two of the 12 armed robbers were shot. Their condition is currently not known.
Moreover, sources report that an undisclosed number of innocent bystanders, as well as two store employees, were also struck by stray bullets in the fiery encounter.
Video footage taken by an eyewitness who’d taken shelter at a nearby establishment filmed the moment one of the getaway vehicles skidded off after firing gunshots at police.
The vehicle in question surfaces towards the end of this video, where at least three armed perpetrators can be seen carrying assault rifles.
#ArmedRobbery #shootout Armed robbery and shootout earlier at Oriental Plaza, Johannesburg. Armed gang robbed Jewellry store.. @BOSBEER2006 @Abramjee @News24 @MARIUSBROODRYK @eNCA @IOL @eNuus pic.twitter.com/8A9D37McXi— BOSBEER.COM (@BOSBEER2006) October 26, 2021
It’s believed Oriental Plaza has shut its doors and police have cordoned off the area, with emergency medical officials on scene attending to injured victims.
This is the third reported jewellery store heist to occur in Gauteng this month alone. At this time, it is not known if the Oriental Plaza shooting is, in any way, linked to the robberies that took place at Centurion Mall and Menlyn Shopping Centre.