Phoenix police detectives are searching for members of a mob who strangled a teenager with a rope and set him alight for alleged rape.
The gruesome murder, on Thursday night, has rocked the north Durban community of Mount Moriah. Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said a 10-year-old girl was allegedly taken from her home and raped on Thursday morning.
She said the community had conducted a search for her and she was found that night with assault wounds. A case of rape was opened at Phoenix SAPS.
“The community allegedly assaulted a 16-year-old male. They took him to a park in Mount Moriah where he was set alight. He died at the scene,” Mbele said.
A case of murder was opened at Phoenix SAPS.
Police detectives found a blood-stained stick near the park. Mbele urged witnesses to come forward.
Councillor Pete Graham said this was the second incident he had heard of in the past few months. He expected to interview the family of the rape victim today.
“I will bring in specialist trauma counsellors. This is a tragic event that has affected the whole community. This child is scarred for life.
“The mob justice trial and execution that took place can never be condoned under any circumstances. I am shocked at the age of the (alleged) perpetrator.”
Phoenix Community Policing Forum’s (CPF) Umesh Singh said he understood the community’s frustration, but did not encourage people to take the law into their own hands.