808-a 4year old Jasmin Lee Pretorius, who was kidnapped and raped by a her 27 year old uncle last night in Brakpan 29.12.2013 Picture:Dumisani Dube

Johannesburg - The man accused of raping and killing his four-year-old niece appeared in the Brakpan Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.

Dressed in a striped black and grey T-shirt and grey tracksuit pants, the 23-year-old looked at his hands throughout proceedings.

The court was packed to capacity, with many of the supporters wearing pink T-shirts. The girl was wearing a pink shirt on the day she was killed.

No phones, cameras, or tablet computers were allowed in the court. Before proceedings began, court orderlies evicted several men dressed in shorts from the room.

The blond-haired accused mumbled to magistrate Khatija Abba that he would like to apply for a State lawyer. His case was postponed to January 13 to give him time to do so.

Dozens of people, also in pink T-shirts, were gathered outside the court. Many of them called for him to be released to them so they could mete out justice to him.

Police arrested the man after the girl was reported missing on Saturday, December 28.

“A missing person's report was issued on Saturday morning and the police and the community started looking (for the girl). We had to do our own investigation,” police spokesman Captain Tsekiso Mofokeng said at the time.

Police then interviewed the family.

“We identified that one of the family members did not give a confident story... he gave many versions.”

Mofokeng said the man was charged with kidnapping. Later “he gave in and confessed” and helped police find the girl's body underneath a bed in her father's flat, on Voortrekker Street. - Sapa