Three people have recently been arrested in connection with the murder of a young Limpopo couple, which happened in October, last year. The murder resulted in violent protests and the killing of an alleged perpetrator’s livestock by the angry community members.
According to Limpopo Police spokesperson, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo, the arrests followed an intelligence-driven operation conducted by the provincial investigating team and other units, including local detectives.
Mojapelo said 18-year-old Lucia Malapane, and 21-year-old Nius Malatjie were found dead at their home in Ga-Rapitsi village by their neighbour, said to be Malatjie’s employer also. It is said that the 47-year-old businessman had gone to the couple’s house to find out why Malatjie had not reported for work when he made the gruesome discovery. The young couple’s one- year-old baby was found sitting next to the parents’ bodies.
Mojapelo also said that the matter was reported to the police and on arrival at the scene, the deceased were found with gruesome injuries. He said the initial investigations were then immediately activated. He also explained that the murders sparked widespread violent protests by community members in the area. He said the community members also accused the said businessman of being responsible for the brutal murder of the young couple.
“The angry mob from this village went on the rampage, torching the businessman’s shop and one motor vehicle. They proceeded to his house, burnt it and in the process, killed some livestock including chickens, goats and pigs,” said Mojapelo.
The suspects then fled the scene. Police have not yet arrested anyone for the violence.
“The intense police investigations into the killings continued until the three suspects were arrested yesterday. The suspects were found in possession of some items belonging to the deceased,” said Mojapelo.
“The suspects, between 34 and 47 years old, will appear before Bolobedu Magistrate’s Court on Monday … facing charges of house breaking with intent to commit two counts of murder, rape and robbery. Police investigations, including the motives for the murders, are continuing,” he added.