Suspect in court, charged with murdering nine-year-old Albertinia girls

Timothy Michael Ova, 53, faces two counts of murder. Photo: supplied

Timothy Michael Ova, 53, faces two counts of murder. Photo: supplied

Published Sep 26, 2022


Cape Town: The man alleged to have murdered two nine-year-old girls from Albertinia in the Western Cape made his first court appearance on Monday.

This comes after the lifeless bodies of Sharon Arries and Jacorien Maurelia Vaaltyn was found in a shack in someone’s backyard on Thursday evening.

The girls went missing on Wednesday.

Speaking to IOL News on Friday morning, Hessaqua mayor Grant Riddles said the murders had gripped the community.

Sharon Arries and Jacorien Vaaltyn, both nine, went missing on Wednesday their bodies were found on Thursday evening. Photo: supplied

“The lives of two innocent young girls were brutally taken away. Albertinia and the broader Hessaqua community are in mourning. These types of crimes are strongly condemned and will not be tolerated in our communities,” Riddles said.

At the time, residents were baying for the blood of a 53-year-old man believed to be responsible for the crimes.

Timothy Michael Ova, better known as Timmy, was immediately named a suspect.

Residents and law enforcement officials set out in search of this ‘person of interest’.

Ova faces two counts of murder in the Riverdale Magistrate’s Court

On Monday, Southern Cape police spokesperson Captain Malcolm Pojie confirmed to IOL the swift action resulted in Ova’s arrest after 12 hours.

“A 53-year-old suspect, the person of interest as referred to in the initial media release, was arrested within 12 hours after he escaped the claws of a mob of community members who formed part of a search party following the activation of the police’s 72-Hour Activation Plan.

”This plan entails the activation of all available and specialised resources to assist in the investigation and finalisation of such cases.

“One of these specialised units was the Langeberg K-9 (Mossel Bay Dog Unit) which was also activated.

“These dedicated dog handlers were on patrol in the rural area of Albertinia on the old “Vloerplaas” road at about 5pm on Friday today, when they spotted a suspicious man that was exiting the bushes adjacent to the road.

“They approached him as he fitted the description of the wanted man as previously shared with those activated to assist with the search.

“The members chased him down and arrested him,” Pojie said.

Riddles said that while they were relieved Ova had been arrested and charged, the crime committed has broken the community.

“I went to visit the parents of the girls and they are broken. Our community is broken. As a parent myself, I am broken and angry.

“To think someone could do that to young children who could never have defended themselves against a grown man like that,” Riddles told IOL.

Western Cape Police Commissioner Lieutenant General Thembisile Patekile lauded the commitment and rapid response of members to bring the suspect to book.

He encouraged the investigating team to go the extra mile and ensure Ova remained in custody.

He said bail would be opposed.

“Although we cannot bring back the lives that has been lost, we can ensure that the perpetrators of gender-based violence and femicide are brought to book,” Patekile said.

Ova is expected back in the Albertinia Magistrate’s Court on Thursday, September 29.

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