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Girl’s body found in veld

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“We appeal to the community to assist the police with any information that can lead to the arrest of the person/s responsible for this crime"

Esmerelda

THE POLICE have called on Upington residents to assist them in tracing the perpetrator/s responsible for the murder of a 14-year-old girl, Esmerelda Isaks, whose body was found in a veld in Rosedale on Monday.

Esmerelda was apparently stabbed six times and her body was found by someone collecting wood in the veld.

Police spokesperson Captain Olebogeng Tawana said yesterday that the body was discovered on Monday. “The body was spotted by a person who was busy collecting wood in the veld on Monday, August 12, 2019 and he alerted the police. The 14-year-old was last seen on Sunday, August 11, when she attended a church service in the area. Her body was found with multiple stab wounds. The deceased was a pupil at one of the local schools in Rosedale,” Tawana said.

He added that the perpetrator was still at large. “No one has been arrested in connection with the incident. We are appealing to any person with information that could assist us to bring the perpetrator of this atrocity to book to contact the investigating officer, Lebogang Tonyane, on 054 3370 113 or 078 1301 234. Alternatively, contact Crime Stop anonymously on 08600 10111.”

The Northern Cape Department of Education has expressed its shock and sadness at the death of the Grade 6 pupil.

Department spokesperson Geoffrey van der Merwe said that Esmerelda had been “robbed of a bright future”.

“The department is shocked and saddened by the sudden and tragic death of Esmerelda Isaks, who was a Grade 6 pupil at Simbruner Primary School in Upington. Esmerelda was robbed of a bright future which awaited her. Our district management team will visit the school and provide counselling to educators as well as pupils,” said Van der Merwe yesterday.

He appealed to the community to assist the police in tracing the perpetrator. “We appeal to the community to assist the police with any information that can lead to the arrest of the person/s responsible for this crime. Those responsible must be brought to book,” he said.

Community members meanwhile said yesterday that they were worried about the safety of their children.

“We are parents and feel the pain of the family of the deceased. We are worried about the safety of our children. We now feel like we have to lock our children inside our homes, but it is not possible as they have to go to school and church,” said one community member.

Another community member said that the authorities needed to make an example of those responsible for the crime.

“We are in the month where we celebrate women. During this month we highlight violence against women and children. It is heartbreaking that this child was killed during this month. What is even more shocking is that she was on the way from church. Our children are not safe anywhere. If the perpetrators are caught, the court should not grant them bail and give them a heavy sentence.”