Suspected serial rapist hangs himself

Getrude Makhafola and Sibongile Mashaba

Getrude Makhafola and Sibongile Mashaba

A 34-year-old suspected serial rapist, who also killed teenagers by slitting their throats, allegedly committed suicide in a police cell - a day after he was arrested.

A 17-year-old believed to be his last victim - in a critical condition at a hospital - managed to write down details of the attack on her, which took place in the man's room in Orlando East, Soweto, on Sunday.

The girl was dumped in the veld and left to die.

This was the same spot where three other teenage girls were found dumped after being raped and murdered.

The victim, who cannot speak because of her slit throat, was able to write down details describing the man.

A sketch was drawn and a search for her by the police for her attacker led them to the suspect's place.

Orlando police spokesman Captain Nomvula Mbense said the man committed suicide, but she could not reveal details.

Other slain girls believed to be victims of the suspect include Nomsa Ngobeni, 19, Zandile Manganyi, 12, and Maduo Mafubedu, 17.

Nomsa was killed after she had attended the Soweto Beach Party at Power Park Dam a month ago. She had been raped and had three stab wounds and a gaping hole in her neck.

Zandile and Maduo were raped and their throats slit.

According to a source, the man had used a rubber mat to kill himself. "He tore the mat into strips. He then tied it into a rope and hanged himself," said the source.

Mbense said: "It looks like he raped the girl and slit her throat elsewhere. He then dumped her in the veld, thinking she was dead. The girl managed to crawl to Madlala Street where a passerby helped her."

The man immediately took her to hospital.

She said the girl was able to punch in her sister's numbers into the unknown man's (helper's) cellphone.