• Do you have anger issues? Are you dealing with them or do you grab a knife, a panga or a brick to attack another person when you get angry? We ask whether there is a link between anger and crime. Refer to the article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p10 to p12.

    Do you have anger issues? Are you dealing with them or do you grab a knife, a panga or a brick to attack another person when you get angry? We ask whether there is a link between anger and crime. Refer to the article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p10 to p12.

  • Citizens are often unsure what they need to do when they are subjected to abuse or acts of brutality by police members. We provide you with valuable tips on what to do and contact details where to report such abuse. Read the article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p50 to p53.

    Citizens are often unsure what they need to do when they are subjected to abuse or acts of brutality by police members. We provide you with valuable tips on what to do and contact details where to report such abuse. Read the article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p50 to p53.

  • The members of the Investigative Psychology Section of the SAPS do much more than to “get into the mind of a criminal”. They render a vital role to assist investigating officers with any psychologically-motivated crimes.  Read more about their work in an article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p40 and p41.

    The members of the Investigative Psychology Section of the SAPS do much more than to “get into the mind of a criminal”. They render a vital role to assist investigating officers with any psychologically-motivated crimes.  Read more about their work in an article published in Servamus: July 2020 on p40 and p41.

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By Annalise Kempen

Do you realise that bullying is a form of child abuse?
It is so serious that the legislature specifically mentions it in the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 where “abuse”, in relation to a child, means any form of harm or ill-treatment deliberately inflicted on a child, and includes bullying by another child.

Bullying should therefore not simply be regarded as anti-social behaviour by a naughty child which we laugh off as being part of childhood. Neither should it be confused with teasing when a few friends team up to "make fun" of their peers. One important difference is that teasing never involves physical or emotional abuse, which is why we need to get behind the reasons why children bully, so we can help them before more serious harm is done and victims suffer more severe trauma.

What is bullying?
The Lexico dictionary describes “bully” as “a person who habitually seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable” (www.lexico.com). Dan Olweus, the creator of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Programme in the United States, defines bullying in his book Bullying at school: what we know and what we can do as follows: “A person is bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons, and he or she has difficulty defending him- or herself.” He highlights three important aspects about bullying namely that it:

  • is aggressive behaviour that involves unwanted, negative actions;
  • involves a pattern of behaviour repeated over time; and
  • involves an imbalance of power or strength (Violence Prevention Works, Nd).

Bullying is even equated to the concept of harassment which is a form of unprovoked aggression often directed repeatedly towards another individual or group of individuals (Cyberbullying Research Centre, Nd). The Protection of Harassment Act 17 of 2011 defines harassment as “directly or indirectly engaging in conduct that the respondent knows or ought to know -

(a) causes harm or inspires the reasonable belief that harm may be caused to the complainant or a related person by unreasonably -

(i) following, watching, pursuing or accosting the complainant or a related person, or loitering outside of or near the building or place where the complainant or a related person resides, works, carries on business, studies or happens to be;

(ii) engaging in verbal, electronic or any other communication aimed at the complainant or a related person, by any means, whether or not conversation ensues; or

(iii) sending, delivering or causing the delivery of letters, telegrams, packages, facsimiles, electronic mail or other objects to the complainant or a related person or leaving them where they will be found by, given to, or brought to the attention of the complainant or a related person; or

(b) amounts to sexual harassment of the complainant or a related person;..” (See more below.)

Why does someone become a bully?
There is often a perception that someone who bullies has an inferiority complex or low self-esteem. According to Violence Prevention Works (Nd), there are interrelated reasons why someone bullies, which include that such individuals:

  • have strong needs for power and (negative) dominance;
  • find satisfaction in causing injury and suffering to others; and
  • are often rewarded materially or psychologically in some way for their behaviour.

In an attempt to prevent bullying and allow for early intervention, it is important to identify the characteristics of potential bullies who may:

  • have a positive attitude towards violence and the use of violence;
  • have a strong need to dominate and subdue other learners and get their own way;
  • be impulsive, aggressive or easily angered;
  • lack empathy towards learners who are bullied;
  • show defiance and aggression towards adults, including teachers and parents;
  • be involved in other anti-social or rule-breaking activities such as vandalism, delinquency and substance abuse;
  • have greater physical strength than others in general and the learners they bully in particular (especially in boys); and
  • be more likely to report owning a gun for risky reasons, such as to gain respect or to frighten others (Violence Prevention Works, Nd).

Are you a bully?
Even when someone displays dominating behaviour, that does not mean that he or she is a bully. Yet, it is important to know whether you are a bully and find ways to eliminate such bullying tendencies or behaviour. Even adults can be bullies in the workplace. Sometimes someone can become a bully as a form of “defensive” behaviour because they are being bullied. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you bullying because it makes you feel powerful?
  • Are you the “kingpin” because you are liked or because people are scared of you?
  • If you are bullying, think about how it would make you feel if someone was making fun of you, harassing you or stealing your lunch money? It would probably make you feel awful, afraid and alone (Childline, Nd).

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[This is only an excerpt of an article published in Servamus: May 2020. The rest of the article discusses the legal aspects related to bullying; whether bullies can apologise for their behaviour; what schools’ role are in dealing with bullying and tips on how to identify when someone is bullied. If you are interested in reading the full article, send an email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out what to do. Ed.]

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Servamus - July 2020

Hacked to death with a panga - that was how Ed Neumeister, the 67-year-old owner of a restaurant in the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal was killed in broad daylight on the first Saturday of June 2020 (Regchand, 2020).
By Annalise Kempen
Imagine you are sitting behind your desk at work and the bleep of an incoming message on your cellphone draws your attention.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
This month's crime series shows us once again how religion can be abused and used to cloak criminal acts.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
The number of women who have committed violent crime globally, is very small in relation to male perpetrators.
By Kotie Geldenhuys

Pollex - July 2020

Read More - S v Davids 2019 (1) SACR 257 (WCC)
Relevant legal provision According to section 1 of the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977, the phrase “aggravating circumstances” (in Afrikaans text: “verswarende omstandig-hede”) is defined as follows:
Read More - S v Zabathini Jonas Case No: CA & R 99/17 dated 19 July 2019 (NCK)
Mr Zabathini Jonas, the accused, was convicted in the regional court, sitting at the town of Phillipstown in the Northern Cape Province (“the trial court”), of two counts of rape, in circumstances where the provisions of section 51 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 105 of 1997 (also referred to as the “Minimum Sentences Act”) applied.
Background According to recent media reports, some members of the South African Police Service (“the SAPS”) and members of the South African National Defence Force (“the Defence Force”) have, generally speaking, conducted themselves incompetently, inexpertly and unprofessionally during law enforcement operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Letters - July 2020

After 80 days of enforcing COVID-19 lockdown regulations, 14 police officials have succumbed to the coronavirus, Police Minister Bheki Cele announced during a multi-disciplinary operation in Soweto.
It is with deep regret and sad hearts that we learnt about the passing of Kelly Ann de Villiers, the wife of W/O Jerome de Villiers.
July Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.