I sat with the security manager, who I must admit was very sweet to me throughout this ordeal. He made me coffee and attempted to distract me from my woes with small chat and finding out more about me.
Naturally the conversation veered to my favourite subject – my kids. I mentioned Star and how I didn’t have money for him to further his studies and he hadn’t had any luck as yet finding a job to keep him busy and start earning him money.
Security Manager said I should bring Star through to the mall when convenient, as he knows all the store managers in the mall and knows which shops are currently looking for staff; and so he offered to take Star around the center to assist in getting him a job. So that was a silver lining.
Still, I was rather down about the loss of Elle Vietjie and her contents and so Security Manager decided on Plan B. He suggested that go stand near the cells and cause a bit of scene – loud enough for The Accused to hear – saying that if I just get my purse back I won’t go ahead with laying charges against the woman.
However before that, the Security Manager was going to slip her handbag to her, so that she would have her cellphone on her and with any luck would call one of her accomplices in order for my wallet to magically reappear.
I put on an Oscar winning performance which really wasn’t difficult as I was livid and I was desperate to have Elle Vietjie back; and after throwing my proverbial toys, I retreated back to the safety of the managers office for another cuppa java.
Not even a sip into my fresh cup; one of the security officers informed me that the police had arrived [only two hours later, but hey, who’s counting] and that I should return to the front of the office to meet with them.
I walked straight into an argument – not even better the police and The Accused, but rather, one of the police officers was laying into The Witness from Mr Price. Luckily my understanding of Zulu was enough to gather that the police were refusing to take a statement in the mall and were insisting that we all go to the police station.
At that stage it was revealed that the sales lady, aka The Witness was actually the store manager and she was explaining to the the one cop in particular that she was not permitted to leave the mall whilst on duty, however once they closed up for the afternoon, she could come to the police station to make her statement.
This led the police officer to become more aggressive and the most he ranted and raved at this poor woman; I kept having a feeling in the back of my head that I knew him from somewhere. I had to dig deep into the memory banks of recent police exposure [too many incidents to recall] and finally I remembered.
He was the bastard cop who falsely accused me of kidnapping! The same drunk officer who harassed me in the middle of the night many months ago! I could not believe it when I finally put the pieces together, I was in absolute shock He didn’t recognise me, but I knew for a fact that it was him … and finally I had his identity.
The Security Manager could see the hard time The Witness and I were having with the cop and so he returned to his office to place a call with the station commander, who in turn sent two more senior officers to assist further.
So there I was, surrounded by several security officers and heavily armed policemen and I all I wanted was to go home. By this stage I didn’t give a damn about Elle Vietjie or The Accused. I was hot and bothered, tired and irritated and quite frankly – the drama just wasn’t worth it.
However, with the senior cops in attendance; the Constables, Witness and I were ushered to an office in order to finally make our statements.
Half way into yet statement giving the gory details of the theft, my cellphone rang with an unfamiliar number …