A blood-soaked baby girl was found playing next to the lifeless bodies of her slain parents in Mpumalanga yesterday.
A family friend, who peeped through a broken window when there was no response to her knocking, saw the 18-month-old toddler smearing the floor with her parents' blood, oblivious to the tragedy around her.
Police said the couple, of Mkhuhlu near Hazyview, had been shot several times.
"They were apparently killed on Sunday night while the child was asleep," said police spokesman Constable Sydney Tshuketana.
The friend told police she had gone to visit the family when she found the child playing in its parents' blood.
She said she used the window to get into the house, but did not touch the child. She called the police.
The police said when they arrived at the house the baby was struggling to crawl through a pool of blood towards her father.
The naked bodies of Raymond Sibiya, 30, and Nonhlanhla Mnisi, 26, were found inside the house with gunshot wounds to their heads.
" The child was taken to the police station where relatives came to fetch her," Tshuketana said.
Police are investigating a case of murder. No arrests have been made yet.
"We heard the sound of gunfire on Sunday night, but that happens all the time and we assumed it was just the normal gunfire we hear every night," said a neighbour, Johannes Khoza
"Then we heard about the tragedy after a family friend had called the police in the morning."
When Sowetan visited the house yesterday, there was no one and neighbours said the child had been taken by relatives.
l Meanwhile, Lucky Shakoane, 32, was found dead on the street in Marite, near Bushbuckridge in Mpumalanga, yesterday.
A passerby found Shakoane lying dead on the street near a primary school and alerted the police. Police said Shakoane was shot in the back, suggesting he was trying to run away.