Home South Africa News 21-year-old suspect arrested for murders of 5 Free State family members

21-year-old suspect arrested for murders of 5 Free State family members


A 21-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the gruesome murders of five family members in Namahadi, Qwaqwa, on Sunday.

An 11-month-old baby was also hit with a knobkerrie during the incident, but he survived the attack.

The suspect was arrested on Wednesday at about 19.30 in Mphatlalatsane, Qwaqwa.

Colonel Thandi Mbambo, Free State police spokesperson, said an integrated team of investigators was appointed to investigate murders and they worked round the clock to trace the culprits.

“Within the 72 hours threshold given by the Acting Provincial Commissioner of Free State, Major General Solly Lesia, a breakthrough was made on Wednesday the 7 April 2021.

“The suspect will appear in Phuthaditjhaba Magistrate Court on Friday the 9 April 2021 on charges of murder, arson and attempted murder.

“We are expecting to make more arrests soon”, said Mbambo.

Mbambo said they had received a report that people had been killed in Marakong village, QwaQwa, on April 4 at about 3am.

She said police went to the scene where they found the body of Moliehi Thoabala, 38, with a gunshot wound to the stomach. Her husband Safolo Mofokeng, 36, was found burnt in their house.

“In another house, the bodies of a mother, Relebohile Lemeko, 48, her daughter Masabata Lemeko, 25, and son, Tatolo Lemeko, 22, were found burnt inside a shack, while the 11-month-old grandson was allegedly hit with a knobkierie on the nose and is currently receiving medical attention at a local hospital.”

She said four children managed to escape in the second attack and reported the incidents to a relative, who then informed the police and rushed the child to the hospital.

The motive for the killing was not yet known, said Mbambo.

-The Star

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