Three suspects accused of killing a man who was caught stealing meat granted bail
Three of the four community members arrested in connection with a murder of a man accused of stealing meat from a pot last week in Mpumalanga were released on bail while one abandoned her bail application.
The accused, Sithandwa Khoza, Nokwanda Nkosi, Nomalanga Mabuza and Sibusiso Gumedze appeared in the KaBokweni magistrate's court on Thursday on charges of murder.
They are accused of beating Willert Nobela, 34, to death after he was caught stealing meat from a pot at their home last week at KaBokweni outside White River.
In a video which surfaced on social media, Nobela is seen being assaulted with sticks and other items.
“As the police in Mpumalanga, we condemn the use of mob justice by the public. The accused caught the deceased stealing meat and assaulted him and he died from the injuries he sustained during the beating. Through investigation, we arrested the four and charged them with murder. We call upon the community to call the police whenever they catch someone accused of crime and not to take the law into their hands,” said spokesperson of the police in Mpumalanga, brig Leonard Hlathi.
Community members who were picketing outside the KaBokweni magistrate's court calling for “no bail” said they were disappointed by the granting of the bail.
“They should rot in jail, how can they kill someone who stole food? It shows that the person was just hungry,” said one of the protestors.
Three accused were granted bail of R1,000 while Khoza abandoned her bail for fear attacks from the public.
Their case was postponed to June 19 for further investigations.