VILLAGERS JOIN COPS AND ARMY IN MASS SEARCH FOR KILLER RAPIST
Armed with knobkerries, axes, guns, sniffer dogs and a helicopter, villagers and the police including army officers have intensified the search for the killer prowling Sebina and the surrounding areas.
The man, who targets elderly women, is wanted for house breaking, robbery, rape, two murders and burning down at least six homesteads in thearea.
His latest attack was over the weekend in Marobela lands when he murdered an 85-years-old granny in a savage attack that left her daughter aged 50 critically injured.
The victimswere hit repeatedly with a crowbar, later found near the scene, after the killer broke into their family farmhouse last Saturday night.
Police have requested that their names be withheld until after the old lady’s funeral this weekend.
A friend of the victims resident inMarobela,too frightened to give his name, disclosed: “The woman died on the spotafter the attackcrushed her head.
Her daughter probably became a victim when she was trying to assist her mum from the killer.”
Police could not confirm reports that the woman’s daughterwas raped in the attack as she is currently battling for her life at Nyangabgwe hospital where her mother is still awaiting a post mortem.
The deceased is the elusive killer’s second victim.
After the first attack he is reported to have left a note threatening to kill six more people including a police officer before accomplishing his mission.
While members of the public vow that they will kill the culprit if they happen to find him, community leaders in the area have appealed for calm.
“We want the suspect alive and sound so that he can stand trail for the crimes levelled against him.
I know people are angry but let’s just bring the culprit here so that the law can take its course,” Marobela Chief RapelangKhuwe said.
Chief Khuwe further warned residents to be more vigilant, especially elderly people who seem to be the killer’s target.
The chief, who has also joined the search party, pleaded with others to join in the search and also help with information leading to the arrest of the wanted man believed to be from Zimbabwe.
Meanwhile Sebina councillor MogomotsiLemogang expressed his suspicion that the culprit was being assisted in his bid to elude justice.
“I am afraid someone in the area is keeping this wicked man safe and updated on all the strategies we are using to catch him,”he maintained.
The councillor claimed that the same man burnt down two huts near Sebina Cross two weeks ago.
He revealed that a warning scribbled on the sand near the scene with similar handwriting to previous notes was discovered saying: “I am back.”
Tati-town Police Station Commander Cyprian Magalila, who is leading the search for killer, said they were convinced that they were dealing with the same man who has been terrorising the area since last December.
Although he was not certain the officer said from the look of things the wanted man might be someone who has some military training.
“It’s most likely that we are dealing with a very dangerous man and we promise not to leave any stone unturned in the search for the culprit,”Magalila added.
The officer confirmed that the man they were looking for had a distinctive scar to his head and below the left ear.