His father says the man has a six-year-old son of his own and he has no idea why his son would kill the little girl.
Police have confirmed that a 25-year-old man from De La Rey Street in Eastridge has been arrested for the murder after her naked body was found buried in a shallow grave next to his Wendy house on Sunday.
The child’s bloody clothing was found in a wheelie bin next to the grave.
The suspect is the boyfriend of Stacey’s mother, Sasha Adams.
According to police, on Saturday around 5 pm, Stacey’s grandmother had sent her to Sasha, who was staying with the suspect, his father and brother, in their Wendy house across the road.
The grandmother was apparently not aware that Sasha had left for a party in Delft on Friday night already.
On Sunday morning, the grandmother contacted Sasha to get the child ready as she was going to fetch her.
It was only then that the family realised the child was missing.
Police launched a search on Sunday afternoon and the child’s body was found within an hour by members of the neighbourhood watch.
The suspect may not be named as he has not yet been charged in court.
The suspect’s 55-year-old father says “things changed” between his son and Sasha after she dumped him.
According to neighbours, the suspect was jealous and became angry on Friday when Sasha left for the party on her own.
“Recently he was very off, everything changed after she left,” says the father.
“I got home from work shortly before the body was found on Sunday afternoon. I asked why the house was such a mess; he said he didn’t know why the neighbourhood watch were raiding the house. They left, but came back to dig up the body,” he says.
“I never raised my children to do this, he has a six-year-old son who lives in the Eastern Cape I don’t know why he did this.”
The suspect’s aunt, who owns the property, says she’s heartbroken after residents destroyed her house on Sunday.
The suspect was inside being questioned by police and people outside bayed for his blood.
She says Stacey was a regular visitor to their home and they are all devastated by her death.
“I never suspected he would do something like this,” the aunt says.
“Stacey used to be a bubbly child who came in and out of my home any time.
“I’m heartsore, I’m traumatised, everyone loved her. I really can’t say what led to this point.”
On Monday Minister of Police Bheki Cele visited Stacey’s family. He spoke to the family inside their house and did not address the media or residents outside.
“We are pleased that one of the suspects is arrested and we hope this will be taken forward and hope somebody gets punished,” was all he would say.
Social Development MEC Albert Fritz, accompanied by the Finance MEC, Dr Ivan Meyer, and MP Bridget Masango also visited the family.