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Friday, April 6, 2007

Man beaten to death after child's rape claim

1-23-2004 South Africa:
Vigilantism has resurfaced in Khayelitsha, with two men - one accused of raping a child and the other of stealing a cellphone - being bludgeoned to death by angry people this week.

In the first incident, a man accused of raping an eight-year-old girl was killed by a group of people in the France area.

Police said the child was allegedly raped on Wednesday last week after being lured to a house to "help wash the dishes", but she had not told her mother until Monday.

The girl's aunt said she and friends of the family had been told about the rape when the girl's mother called them at 8pm on Monday.

The mother had gone to the alleged rapist's home and confronted him and an argument, loud enough to be heard by neighbours, had ensued.

When the aunt arrived at the house, she found several angry residents gathered at the scene.

"They were beating someone," the aunt said. "I could not recognise him because his face was full of blood and sand. He was lying on the ground dead and there were planks, stones and rocks lying beside him."

The police were called.

The aunt said the girl's mother had noticed that the child was struggling to walk on Monday.

"When she asked the child what the problem was, she said she had been raped," said the aunt. The child was taken to a doctor, who confirmed she had been sexually assaulted.

The girl's father said she had also gone for an HIV test, but the results had come back negative. The child would have another test in three months. She was receiving counselling.
Khayelitsha police spokesperson Priscilla Ndongeni said the case was being investigated.

In another incident on Sunday, an angry mob killed a man accused of stealing a cellphone. Police found his body under a bridge near Site 10. Nine people were arrested and are to appear in court on Friday.

Western Cape police commissioner Mzwandile Petros said he was outraged at people taking the law into their hands.

"We urge community members to co-operate with police in curbing crime and not to take the law into their hands. Vigilantism will not be condoned." ..more.. by Kashiefa Ajam and Babalo Ndenze

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