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'Police failed murdered mother of 4-year-old sex abuse victim'

Cape Town - A man who was believed to have been caught red-handed sexually abusing a 4-year-old girl was allegedly escorted home by police after the family of the girl handed him over to them.
Days later, the alleged culprit is believed to have shot the girl's mother four times through her window, killing her.
Now the extended family, living in Bishop Lavis, fear for their lives as gang member associates of the person who allegedly killed the mother continue to threaten them. They say that even before the 48-year-old mother of five was shot, her alleged killer threatened her and her children with a gun for days after allegedly abusing the minor.
The mother’s eldest sister, who agreed to speak on condition that the Cape Argus withheld her identity, explained what happened after the sexual assault.
“He started making death threats and would walk outside and threaten us with a gun,” she said.
Over the Easter weekend, the alleged perpetrator chased the eldest daughter with a gun, threatening to kill her.
“My sister wasn’t scared; she didn’t take it seriously; we didn’t take it seriously.”
But the mother’s fate was sealed last week. While she was getting ready for bed, the alleged perpetrator shot her four times in her chest and leg. Her daughters tried frantically to stop the bleeding.
“We called the police and the ambulance but the ambulance took so long we waited more than an hour. And when they got here they said there was nothing they could do.”
The alleged killer was eventually arrested for the murder but the nightmare continues. The family has been receiving death threats from the alleged perpetrator’s gang member friends.
“My stomach is in a knot, I can’t sleep and I can’t eat at night because I am fearing for my life and for my sister’s children’s lives,” she said.
The murder victim had been her family’s breadwinner. Her children are afraid to play outside and even walk to the shop.
“I believe if the police had done their job and arrested him in the first place, my sister would still be alive.
“It’s through their negligence that this happened,” she said.
Another sister said she had opened numerous cases at the police station after the death threats started.
“My gripe with them is their negligence and the lack of interest in the community and that is why the community is taking the law into their own hands. They don’t trust the police because they are in cahoots with the gangsters,” she said.
The family is preparing for the funeral on Saturday.
Police spokesperson Novela Potelwa said complaints were viewed in a very serious light.
“The allegations contained in the correspondence are viewed in a serious light by the SAPS. On this basis the family is encouraged to contact (Bishop Lavis) station commander Brigadier Jones, who launched a preliminary investigation.
“The suspect is currently in custody facing murder charges.
“If any SAPS member is found to have contravened police prescripts in relation to the matter, decisive steps will be taken,” Potelwa said.
* Names of the family members are withheld for safety reasons.

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