Man bust for rape and choking girl (7)

Image: 123RF/ scanrail

A 34-year-old Limpopo man who was recently arrested for raping and attempting to kill a seven-year-old girl had been on the run from police for months and was wanted for murder.

Charle Motswathupa will today appear in the Groblersdal magistrate's court for the December murder of a two-year-old boy.

He made his first appearance in the case on October 3.

Police spokesperson Col Moatshe Ngoepe said: "The suspect had been on the run for some time after the commission of this murder in the Marble Hall policing area.

"It is alleged that in December 2018, in the morning, the body of a boy child aged two years was found in the bushes near Koteng village in Marble Hall with head injuries after he was allegedly reported missing the previous day.

"The suspect was later identified [as the alleged killer] but he disappeared after realising that the police were tracing him."

Ngoepe said the young boy was identified as Samson Sithole from Seraheng village.

Motswathupa was arrested last week after being discharged from hospital due to the injuries sustained from a mob attack by the local community following an alleged attempted murder, kidnapping and rape of the seven-year-old girl.

MEC for community safety Dickson Masemola, who visited the girl in hospital on Friday, described her situation as "heartbreaking".

"I went to her home on Friday where I met with her parents and we proceeded together to Polokwane Hospital where she is receiving medical attention.

"She still can't talk or eat on her own and medical doctors in the intensive care unit are doing everything in their power to stabilise her.

"It was very sad and heartbreaking to see a defenceless child going through that difficult time. I think the suspect needs to be removed from society," Masemola said.

He said the man allegedly raped the girl and choked her, leaving her for dead in the bushes. "She has bruises on her neck..." Masemola said.

Ngoepe said: "The suspect is still going to appear before the Nebo magistrate's court for a formal bail application on the rape incident.

"At this stage, the suspect is linked to cases of murder, attempted murder, rape and kidnapping but he might be linked to more cases as the profiling is still under way."

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