• Eastern Cape Rising Sun

Stabbed, defending siblings


Tanner (19) takes a selfie with his brothers Gabriel (9) and Cobby (13). The trio were attacked by robbers at a recreational park.

Luke Wilson’s heart almost stopped when his nine-year-old ran like the wind into their yard screaming that his brother had been stabbed.


The father of three was in his Cambridge home working in the garage on Tuesday afternoon. He jumped over the fence and rushed to the nearby park where his children were playing.


“Oh man, Colby was trying to hold up Tanner, he had been stabbed on the neck/shoulder and on his back through his ribs,” said Wilson. Tanner (19) and his brothers Gabriel (9) and Colby (13) do not share the same home, so on Tuesday afternoon, they had time to catch up.


Luke, against his better judgement, allowed them to go to the neighbourhood recreational park on the corner of Sprigg and Hebbes Road. The three were listening to music through their phones when three adult males tried robbed them.


They took Colby’s phone and Tanner would not have it. He tried to fight them off but they stabbed him. They continued to hit Colby in the head with an unknown object until he suffered a concussion. Gabriel ran home to get help.


“When I got to the park, Tanner was gasping for air; he could not breathe,” said Wilson who still cannot believe the incident happened. “A co-worker had a hard fall a few weeks ago and complained about the same symptoms. I knew that my son had a punctured lung, he was suffocating because he had water in his chest,” added Wilson.


Wilson drove like a mad man to the paramedics in Vincent with hazards on, lights on, hooter on; anything to get traffic to clear up as he thought his son was dying. Tanner was rushed to Frere hospital where he was stabilised, treated and discharged two days later (Thursday).


Colby was heavily sedated for his concussion. “The service I received from the paramedics and the hospital may have saved my son’s life, I am so grateful. This has to have been the worst experience of my life,” said the father who is concerned about his two youngest sons.


Colby blames himself for the incident. After they left Tanner at the hospital, he broke down

and cried. Wilson lashed out at the Municipality for putting up a concrete fence around the park, making it a haven for criminals to attack children without passersby noticing.


He claims that locals told him about the slow emergence of robberies at the park and at the

Cambridge train station, with cellphones being the biggest target. He is calling for the fence

and the gates to be taken down so the park to be an open space for children to run around or a security guard must be hired.


According to Captain Mluleki Mbi, spokesperson for the Cambridge police where a case of robbery is being investigated, “this is the second case reported since June this year.”

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