The suspect accused of the kidnap and murder of 12-year-old Michaela Williams was a convicted rapist out on parole who had missed his appointment in December. Picture: David Ritchie/African News Agency(ANA)
The suspect accused of the kidnap and murder of 12-year-old Michaela Williams was a convicted rapist out on parole who had missed his appointment in December. Picture: David Ritchie/African News Agency(ANA)

'The accused testified with a smile that he killed my child'

By Vincent Cruywagen and Marvin Charles Time of article published Jan 14, 2020

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Cape Town - The 48-year-old suspect accused of the kidnap and murder of 12-year-old Michaela Williams was a convicted rapist out on parole who had missed his appointment in December with his parole officer.

A woman whose eight-year-old daughter was raped, stabbed and left for dead by the accused in February 2005, said had the parole officer acted, Michaela might have been alive today.

The accused was released in 2018 after serving 13 years of a 20-year sentence for the rape. The child survived the ordeal and identified her assailant.

Michaela was last seen alive outside her home in New Horizon, Pelican Park, last week. The accused was arrested on Wednesday and after making some admissions showed the police on Thursday morning where the Michaela body was dumped in Schaapkraal, Philippi.

On Monday, the 8-year-old rape victim's mother shared the pain she suffered at the hand of the accused in February 2005, outside the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court where he appeared.

“The Department of Correctional Services not just failed me but the family of the murdered Michaela. The parole officer never informed me that he was out on parole.

"On Friday, a day after the body of Micheala was found I went to the office of the parole officer and he couldn’t answer me,” the woman said.

Recalling the events in February 2005 when her child went missing, she said the rapist was familiar with her family and used to take the children to school and bring them back.

“My child went to buy an ice lolly at a spaza shop in Hyde Park in Tafelsig and never came back. The accused was searching with us for her.

“When I found my child in Khayelitsha cemetery she was full of blood. She was raped and stabbed in the heart but survived. She immediately said who it was.

"The time when we went to court the accused testified with a smile that he killed my child. But the day when my child testified he said it was not her because he made sure she was dead,” the mother said.

The Department of Justice and Correctional Services said that they have launched an investigation into the allegations that there were flaws in allowing the suspect to roam free.

Provincial Commissioner Delekile Klaas said: "We have launched our own investigation which will take about two weeks. If it does appear that any of our officials have not done its job properly we will take action. This is an extremely unfortunate incident and extremely sensitive." 

Klaas said that they are aware of the allegations made against the department that they did not fulfill their duties. 

"We are aware of it and from the department's side we have made strides when releasing people out on parole, however, the allegations are unfortunate," Klaas said.

The 8-year-old rape victim's mother was among scores of supporters who packed court 4 and waited for the accused to appear before magistrate Goolam Bawa. However, the moment was too overwhelming for Michaela’s mother who had a panic attack.

Pictured is Michaela Williams' mother, Beatrice Adams (in red dress), leaving court. Picture: David Ritchie/African News Agency(ANA)

Beatrice Adams sobbed hysterically and supporters jumped out of their seats and started praying while a number of people shouted for someone to bring Adams water.

When the court proceedings eventually got under way, the magistrate warned the people to behave orderly and that any outburst would result in them being asked to leave the courtroom.

State prosecutor Nicky Koniso told the court the accused has a previous conviction of raping an eight-year-old girl. .

Bawa accepted the prosecution’s request that the name or any pictures of the suspect not be published.

He also warned that those placing pictures of the accused on Facebook would face the consequences and be charged.

Kyle Jason appearing for the accused indicated his client had elected not to apply for bail.

The case was postponed for further investigation to obtain statements as well as for the outcome of the post-mortem report.

The accused will next appear in court on April 14 via a video feed from Pollsmoor Prison.

@TheCapeArgus

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Cape Argus

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