Home News Pupil, 20, accused of rape at place of safety

Pupil, 20, accused of rape at place of safety

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A 20-year-old LGBTQI+ pupil, who is being accommodated at the Lerato Place of Safety, is expected to apply for bail in the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court today after he was allegedly caught on camera sexually violating a 17-year-old boy.

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A 20-YEAR-old LGBTQI+ pupil, who is being accommodated at the Lerato Place of Safety, is expected to apply for bail in the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court today after he was allegedly caught on camera sexually violating a 17-year-old boy.

It was reported that the pupil was being transported to and from the Lerato Place of Safety to school every day by the Department of Social Development.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Sergio Kock said the Galeshewe SAPS Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences unit was investigating a rape that allegedly occurred at a place of safety in Kimberley.

“It is alleged that a 20-year-old suspect raped another 17-year-old boy at the place of safety on March 2. The suspect was subsequently arrested and is being held in custody at a correctional facility,” said Kock.

He added that the suspect was expected to make a formal bail application on March 15.

“The investigation continues.”

The director of the Shaine Griqua Advice and Development Centre, Shaine Griqua, questioned why the suspect was brought to a place of safety for minor children when he was over the age of 18.

“A victim of a sexual offence has in turn been charged for allegedly abusing other children. How did he gain access to the other children? It appears as if he was not accepted at the school hostel,” said Griqua.

He pointed out that LGBTQI+ persons were exposed to all types of dangers due to the lack of facilities and shelters.

“Their safety is at risk as they are stigmatised and victimised, especially in holding cells and inside prison walls. There are also no transgender-friendly facilities at the police cells or at correctional facilities. For many years we requested support for this initiative but were never offered any support or assistance.”

Griqua called on the Commission for Gender Equality to intervene and monitor the case.

“As a non-governmental organisation, we are really saddened by this incident. We need to stand up against any form of abuse, in particular gender-based violence and femicide.

“We are calling on all LGBTIQA+ communities to rally against LGBTIQA+ members who are in conflict with the law. Such behaviour is not acceptable and the law must take its course.”

Griqua indicated that they would follow the court proceedings in support of the complainant.

“We condemn any form of violation of the rights of any person regardless of race, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity. We will also urge the court not to grant bail.”

A spokesperson for the Department of Social Development, Gamiem Abrahams, confirmed that the accused was residing at the Lerato Place of Safety.

“A range of services were offered, including transportation to and from school,” said Abrahams.

He indicated that as the case was still under police investigation, the department reserved the right to withhold further comment until all due processes had been followed.

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