A Meyersdal SuperSpar employee has been charged with attempted kidnapping after he was captured on video picking up a customer's baby and walking off with her.
On Monday, the mother of the child, Danielle Wolff, took to social media to recall the harrowing incident that happened on Sunday morning as she was buying groceries at the store. The traumatised mother related what happened as she was shopping in a lengthy Facebook post shared a day after the incident.
“I had her in my arms and when I get to the meat section I placed her in the trolley to free up my hands. I [couldn't] find what I’m looking for and bend down,” said Wolff.
“Within an instant a stranger is seen in the video taking my daughter. I look up and she’s gone … I immediately look for her and find her in the arms of this man.
“I’m able to grab her from him and say what’s he doing with my daughter? Why does he have her? He is smiling and laughing, telling me he walked past the trolley and my daughter's arms were up, so he picked her up. I am frozen and confused. Why is he laughing?
“Behind me is another staff member — also laughing. I keep saying this is not funny, you don’t touch a child, you don’t take a child … this isn’t a joke and I don’t find it amusing. I am unsure what to do next, the man again approaches me to “demonstrate” what my daughter was doing and that she wants to go with him?”
An angry Wolff went on to explain that after repeatedly questioning the man, she left the trolley and “reported this [incident] to management. I explain to the manager that a staff member had taken my daughter out the trolley, he advised me that no-one should touch my child.
“He also asks if this staff member was wearing a hoodie, which lets me know that he had a person in mind. I can’t confirm the hoodie and I’m advised they will speak to the staff member. I don’t feel heard, so I leave to call my husband. He asks me to get the guy's details so I can call them and wants to come view the footage.
“I go back, where I meet the same manager who advises he shouldn’t have touched her and says I need to chat to another manager who has been advised of the incident. I go over and he says the staff member has come forward and advised he didn’t mean any harm … I don’t believe it and ask what do you think he was going to do with her?”
TimesLIVE understands that the employee has since been suspended by Spar.
The National Prosecuting Authority said the suspect, Mduduzi Godfrey Thobela, appeared in court on August 23.
He was released on bail and is due back in court on September 15.