Mutilated baby found in Diepsloot
The mutilated body of a six-month-old was found in Diepsloot on Sunday in what neighbours and relatives claim was a muti murder.
Police are insisting it was an attack by rats, but a local journalist, Golden Mtika, who was one of the first on the scene and who saw the child’s body, said there was no way rats could have caused such mutilation.
Parts of the child’s arm, foot and one eye were missing. There was bruising on her face.
Her body was found lying on top of a pile of bloodied blankets.
“This does not look like an attack by rats. There were body pieces missing – I saw that with my own eyes,” he said.
The mother reported the child’s death to police in the early hours of the morning and told them rats had killed her child. However, by the time police arrived, she had disappeared and has not been seen since.
The Star visited the area and found police sifting through the blankets and other possessions, searching for body parts.
There were bloodied towels and blankets still lying around.
Officers advised The Star team not to stay long as the angry community had threatened to burn down the shack.
Two women identified themselves to The Star – the child’s grandmother and aunt.
They would not reveal their names, saying they feared the attacker would return to kill the woman’s other children.
“My sister’s gone. She ran away this morning after she found her baby dead and left us with her other children to look after. She likes to drink a lot and was at the shebeen last night. We don’t know where she is or if she will come back,” one woman said.
Another relative, who also would not be named, said the child had been left alone while her mother went out drinking during the night.
SAPS spokesman Captain Tsekiso Mofokeng at first told The Star they were investigating a murder and officers were searching for body parts.
He later said a pathologist, in an “observation report”, said the child had died as a result of an attack by rats.
DA councillor Michael Sun, who was in Diepsloot for voter registration, was one of the first to be told about the dead child.
“The community says it was a muti murder after they saw the body. I suspect that because it was voter-registration day, police were reluctant to confirm this because they didn’t want to disrupt proceedings and cause panic in the area, as happened when the Mali cousins were murdered last month,” Sun said.
“There also were not many police around to investigate because they were all deployed at the voter registration stations.”