baby takes blows

Sne Masuku

Sne Masuku

A four-month-old Pietermaritzburg baby died in her mother's arms when she took punches that were meant for her mother during a fight between her parents on Saturday.

Her mother was holding the baby girl while the father was allegedly throwing punches at the woman.

When police were called to the home in the Edendale area they found a baby's body in the house. According to the information police gathered at the scene it is alleged that the parents had been fighting.

The baby had sustained injuries to her face and allegedly died of the punches she sustained during the attack.

It is alleged the mother had been carrying the baby in her arms while she was being battered by the man.

She allegedly used the child as a shield trying to make him stop assaulting her, but he did not stop. Instead some of the punches that were meant for the mother allegedly connected with the baby's face.

Police spokesman Henry Budhram confirmed the incident saying that the couple had a domestic dispute and the father subsequently assaulted the mother.

"It would appear that during the assault, the child sustained injuries to her face and died as a result," said Budhram.

Budhram said it was alleged that the father only used his hands to assault the woman. He said that through the information they gathered from the mother and their own investigation they were able to arrest the father on the scene.

The father, who cannot be named until he appears in the Pietermaritzburg magistrate's court today, has been charged with the murder of his daughter.

l Meanwhile Pietermaritzburg police made a breakthrough when they arrested a young man accused of raping an elderly woman.

Extensive investigations into the rape by the provincial crime intelligence project team and the Greytown organised crime team led to the arrest of a 29-year-old man.

Upon searching the man's house, police found various items that belonged to the woman. They could, however, not reveal what kind of woman's belongings were found in the suspect's possession, but said the items were necessary as evidence to make an arrest.

Budhram said the man was arrested on Friday for the rape incident that happened on December 22. Police are still searching for another man who is alleged to be the suspect's accomplice in the rape.

The suspect will appear in the Greytown magistrate's court today