Priest breaks ankle chasing muggers

Left: Father Gerardo Garcia of the Holy Cross Church broke his foot chasing muggers.

A priest broke his foot in a fall while chasing two muggers who had stolen a teacher’s handbag in Walmer Estate on Monday morning.

The Holy Cross Primary School teacher was threatened by two men with knives in Nile Street as she climbed out of her car.

They took her cellphone and handbag holding R250 and her ID and credit card, according to Cape Town Central police spokesman, Captain Ezra October.

The muggers dropped the handbag as Father Gerardo Garcia, of the Holy Cross Church, and the school security guard chased them, but the thieves had taken the documents and cash.

Father Garcia said he had seen the teacher calling for help as the muggers ran down Nile Street towards Nelson Mandela Boulevard.

It was raining and he slipped during the chase.He was taken to the Christiaan Barnard Hospital and will have to wear a cast on his left foot for six weeks and use crutches.

Principal Nomthandazo Zweni said the mugging was a big shock for the school.

“We fear for our lives, and this incident emotionally affects the other teachers at the school,” she said.

The school has one security guard, and Ms Zweni is appealing for more of a police presence in the area.

Since the mugging, Delia Scott, a spokeswoman for Rambling Readers, and Father Garcia have raised
R 5000 to improve security at the school.

Ms Scott is calling on more donors to assist. Call her at 072 282 4346 if you want to help.

Anyone with information about the mugging can call Crime Stop at 08600 10111 or Cape Town Central police station at 021 467 8001/2 .