A jilted 20-year-old man yesterday held his 28-year-old former girlfriend's family hostage for six hours in Lenasia South, Johannesburg,
"We always lock the gate, but I don't know what happened this morning," said a terrified Faith Archary, 13, as she witnessed the drama unfolding from the street.
The Grade 8 pupil was among curious onlookers outside her home where four members of her family had been held against their will by a gun-toting Donovan Naidoo.
Naidoo was apparently upset that Viola Archary had broken off their affair.
Inside the house were Faith's sister Denise, 23, her husband Gerald Barthman, 27, their one-year-old son Jodash and another sister Praise, 16.
While police negotiators and snipers surrounded the house, Faith recounted what had happened since 6.30am.
"I was getting ready for school when I heard a knock at the front door. When I opened the door, there was a man wearing a cap I didn't recognise."
She said Naidoo had told her that he was looking for Viola.
She told him Viola had already left for work and he then said he did not want Faith to leave the house.
"He moved further into the house and told my two sisters and my brother-in-law to go into the master bedroom."
Faith managed to escape and alerted a neighbour who called the police.
Viola and Naidoo dated for two months.
Archary's father, Sweetie, said his daughter received text messages from Naidoo last week telling her to enjoy her last days "on Earth".
During the hostage drama, Naidoo sent a text message to Viola warning her that he would kill the one-year-old Jodash if she did not return to the house.
Thirty minutes later he sent her another message saying he would kill Denise, instead.
Naidoo surrendered following lengthy negotiations with police after releasing Denise and Jodash and later Praise
Captain Julia Claassen said only after the drama had ended did they realise Naidoo had been brandishing a toy gun while holding up the family.