South Africa: helmet cam records robbery

Associated Press

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The video from a South African cyclist's helmet camera shows a gunman running forward and stealing the bicycle and other possessions with the help of two accomplices, apparently unaware that they were being filmed.

Video footage helped police investigators track and arrest the three suspects, all of them 22 years old, who robbed the cyclist of his mountain bike and cellular telephone, police said Thursday. The suspects face a robbery charge and will remain in custody until a court hearing later this month, police Lt. Col. Andre Traut said in a statement emailed to The Associated Press.

The robbery occurred Saturday near the town of Somerset West, not far from Cape Town and South Africa's wine lands. The cyclist, identified in local media as Malcolm Fox, was traveling alone with his camera recording when he was accosted after crossing railway tracks.

In the video, the cyclist immediately gets off his bike, stays calm and cooperates with the thieves, who move quickly to take his possessions before running off and motioning to him to walk in a different direction. At one point, the gunman appears to peer briefly into the camera lens, but makes no move to take the helmet.

Fox, the cyclist, shared the video with police, and it has also been posted on YouTube. Police said the stolen mountain bike and cellular telephone were recovered.

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