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Baby’s cries lead to gruesome crime scene


Neighbours were concerned that the couple’s baby had been crying continuously for several hours.

Durban – The family of a Phoenix woman is reeling in shock after she was found murdered in her home, apparently by her husband, who was found hanging in the house, at the weekend.

The matter is being treated as a murder-suicide by police.

Police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said the incident took place at the couple’s Stemlen Drive home in Northcroft, Phoenix, on Saturday. 

“A 30-year-old woman was found suffocated with a plastic bag, as well as a belt. A 35-year-old man was also found hanging inside the house. A nine-month-old baby who was inside the house was not harmed. The circumstances surrounding the incident are being investigated and a murder inquest is being investigated at Phoenix SAPS,” she said.

A close relative of Romila Naidoo said she was alerted that something was untoward at the Naidoo home by their neighbours, who were concerned that the couple’s baby had been crying continuously for several hours.

“When I got there, I found her (Romila) lying by the door, almost in a bending position, and her baby was crying,” the relative sobbed.

According to an officer of a security firm who was at the scene, the community had tried to break the door down with numerous objects to gain entry.

“We eventually made a small hole through the door and gained entry. She was found lying semi-naked on the floor.

“It looked like a belt and a plastic bag were used to suffocate the mom.

“The baby was taken away and given to relatives to look after,” the officer said.

Neighbours said they had not heard any raised voices, arguing or other sounds from the house, other than the cries of the couple’s nine-month-old baby.

Romila’s emotional relative said her husband Vasudevan was possessive and had kept her estranged from the family.

“This is very shocking. We were not expecting this, although she did want to leave him, we are puzzled as to what took place,” she added.

Romila’s funeral is set to take place today.

The couple are believed to have been together for 11 years.

It was the second tragedy to strike a Phoenix couple that night.

In the second incident, a man was shot dead and his pregnant girlfriend beaten, when they were attacked after their car broke down in the Verulam area.

Daily News

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