A Johannesburg family has been left shattered after a woman and her grandchildren were found dead with their throats slit.
With just five days left of Women’s Month, the bodies of 58-year-old Matsie Dhladhla, her grandchildren, Botshelo Motsele, 14, and Tebello Motsele, 10, were discovered at their Protea Glen home in Soweto on Monday.
Family members were still in shock on Tuesday at finding their loved ones with multiple stab wounds and slit throats on Monday morning after being called to the scene by a neighbour who grew suspicious about the lack of activity in the house.
It is suspected Dhladhla’s boyfriend committed the murders over the weekend and is on the run.
According to the police, preliminary evidence suggests that the victims were stabbed one after the other.
Mapule Motsele, Dhladhla’s sister, said a neighbour called her when she noticed that there was no activity in the yard for a couple of days.
Motsele said: “The neighbour contacted our other sister, Palesa, asking her where the kids were as she didn’t see any activity in the yard for a long time and couldn’t get through to my sister.
“Palesa, who is a metro policewoman and the mother of 10-year-old Tebello, went with her partner to check what could be the matter. That’s when they discovered the bodies,” said Motsele.
According to Motsele, when Palesa and her partner arrived at the house, the gate was locked.
“Her partner jumped over the wall and went to assess the yard. After knocking on the door with no reply, her partner went around the yard and when he peeked through the window, he saw blood.
“Fortunately, the window was slightly open and he was able to break the burglar gate to gain entry.”
Motsele said the partner discovered the 10-year-old’s body in Dhladhla’s bedroom while the body of the teenager was found in another room.
“The forensic experts that came to the scene described the cruel manner in which our sister and the kids were killed. They confirmed that both the kids’ throats were slit while our sister was stabbed in the neck, stomach and side,” said Motsele.
Dhladhla, who lived with the two children, was living with her boyfriend before kicking him out in July.
“We believe it was the boyfriend who killed our sister and children as there was no sign of robbery so it had to be someone who knows the house and has the keys,” said Motsele.
The family believe that the man came in, killed them and locked the house and gate behind him so nothing would appear out of the ordinary.
Dhladhla, who lost all three of her children and her husband over the years, is survived by her three sisters and her father.
She is said to have been a humble, down-to-earth person who lived for her “two little boys”.
“The family is in deep pain, even the community members. My sister was a good person who cared about her family and those around her. All her children passed on and Botshelo was all she had left from her children. We are very devastated and want justice for our sister so that we can find closure,” said Motsele.
Community members said they were shocked to learn of the gruesome murders in their neighbourhood.
SAPS spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters has appealed for any information that could lead to the arrest of the suspect.
“Police are appealing for information following the gruesome discovery of the bodies of a 58-year-old woman and two boys ages 10 and 14 in a house in Protea Glen extension 24 in the early hours of Monday morning 24 August.”
Peters said a team had been put together to fast-track the arrest.
“Gauteng Commissioner of Police Lieutenant-General Elias Mawela has ordered the urgent mobilisation of maximum responses to ensure that the perpetrators of this heinous crime against the woman and her grandchildren is or are found and brought to book as a matter of priority,” said Peters.
Anyone who may have information that could assist in the investigation and lead to the arrest of the suspects is urged to contact Constable Thamsanqa Mkhize at 079 032 6291 or to report to the nearest police station. They can also report it to Crime Stop at 0860 010 111.
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