Girl's body found in pit toilet after ransom demand

Relative bust for kidnap, murder of teen

A 19-year-old man is due to appear in court on Wednesday [today] in connection with a case involving a 14-year-old teenage girl who was murdered
A 19-year-old man is due to appear in court on Wednesday [today] in connection with a case involving a 14-year-old teenage girl who was murdered
Image: 123rf/ Allan Swart

A 19-year-old Mpumalanga man has been arrested in connection with the kidnapping and murder of his 14-year-old relative.

Zinhle Sekgoapa was kidnapped on Wednesday last week and a man called her family demanding a ransom for her release, Mpumalanga  police said.

However, on Saturday, Zinhle was found dead, dumped in a pit toilet with plastic wrapped around her head.

Provincial police spokesperson Brig Leonard Hlathi said: “A 19-year-old man is due to appear in court on Wednesday [today] in connection with a case involving a 14-year-old teenage girl who was murdered and her body found dumped in a pit toilet over the weekend.

“The young girl was last seen by her family on Wednesday, September 16 2020, and her family only realised that something bad happened to her the next day after they received threatening messages via cellphone as well as a demand for payment in exchange for her release. They [the family] then notified the police who opened a case of kidnapping and an investigation began.”

Hlathi said on Saturday, Zinhle's body was discovered by a family member inside a pit toilet at her residence. Police were notified about the discovery and upon arrival at the scene, they opened a murder case.

“They [the police] worked tirelessly in search for her killers and made a breakthrough by arresting a suspect who has been fingered in the case,” Hlathi said..

He said police suspect the victim might have been drugged before being taken away.

“It is believed that the girl might have been drugged prior to her death. However, a postmortem will be conducted to determine the cause of death. The man is facing a charge of murder and police cannot rule out [the possibility of adding more charges against the accused.”

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