THE former Criminal Investigations Department (CID) officer, Jaison Muvhevhi, who shot and killed three people in Wedza last Friday afternoon, survived a fierce shootout with police in Rusape on Saturday.
Muvhevhi, who is understood to be a gold dealer, killed an apostolic sect prophet in cold blood as he was preaching in front of congregants.
Police had located Muvhevhi in the Chiduku area near Rusape, and the moment he realised he was being pursued, he opened fire, sparking a fierce exchange of gunfire with law enforcement agents that are heavily deployed in the area.
Realising that he was being overpowered, Muvhevhi abandoned his Toyota Allion vehicle and sped off on foot into the nearby Chigora mountain.
Apart from the car, police also recovered a Techno mobile phone and a ZRP FN Rifle loaded with four rounds of ammunition.
Last night, national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the search for the suspect continues.
“Nothing has changed from the statement we gave in the morning (yesterday),” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
“We are still looking for him. He has not yet been arrested as has been said on social media. The suspect fled and left his vehicle and a gun he had taken from the officers.
“He had been located in Chiduku. It is not true that he has been arrested.”
As the search for him continues, families of the victims gathered at various venues yesterday, with Insp Hove’s family conducting a church service in Mabelreign in Harare, while a few relatives were at the slain prophet’s homestead in Wedza.
The people of Wedza continue to live in fear and most homesteads were still deserted by yesterday as they are afraid that Muvhevhi could return and harm them.
Funeral arrangements for Insp Hove will be advised soon, but indications are that he will be buried in his rural home of Mberengwa.
Family members and relatives yesterday said they were devastated by Insp Hove’s killing.
The official family spokesperson, himself a policeman, said he needed clearance to speak in detail.
But some family members described Insp Hove as a “loving father and family man” who was always there for his family.
Another family member said he was disheartened by the way Insp Hove died.
“His family is still very young. It hurts that he was just shot and died that way. At least if he had been injured, we would have seen him alive and maybe he dies later on,” he said.
Another relative said: “I am saddened to hear of the passing on of Hove. He was a good man. We worked and lived together well.
“It is a big loss to the family, especially his young children. We are saddened he died this way.”
To many outside his profession, Insp Hove was known as Baba Rejoice.
He is survived by wife Nelia and four children.