Family baffled after teenage daughter's rape case withdrawn

Police say a gang-rape case brought by a teenager had no prospect being successfully prosecuted. But the victim's family say the suspects - four boys - are known and that there were eyewitnesses to the assault.
Police say a gang-rape case brought by a teenager had no prospect being successfully prosecuted. But the victim's family say the suspects - four boys - are known and that there were eyewitnesses to the assault.
Image: 123RF/Artit Oubkaew

A family whose 14-year-old daughter was allegedly gang-raped by four boys at a village in North West is baffled after discovering the case has been withdrawn.

The victim says she was raped on Monday afternoon on her way home from school.

On the day, she had gone to finalise registration at a new secondary school while her mother went to collect her grade 7 report.

Since the ordeal, the traumatised teen has not returned to school, where she fears having to face two of her alleged rapists.

“She is not well at all. She doesn’t want to be near other people. She just locks herself up in the room,” said a family spokesperson, who explained what happened. The victim, as a minor and rape victim, cannot be identified.   

The girl arrived home crying on Monday.

“She told us four boys [from the area], stopped her and forced her to go to a shack close by. On arrival they locked her inside and took turns raping her," he said.  

“She was crying and screaming. She was rescued by a community member and more people started coming in. They saw the boys run away," he said.

The family said a case was immediately opened with Mothutlung police.

“There were eyewitnesses and the suspects are known in the area, but we kept being told police are busy with investigations," he said. 

The family subsequently discovered the case was withdrawn.

Provincial police spokesperson Col Adele Myburg confirmed a case had been opened, but said it was later withdrawn.

Explaining why, she said: "The case was withdrawn due to no prospect of a successful prosecution.”

The department of education in the province did not respond to queries. This article will be updated with its comment.


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