A mother bludgeoned a three-year-old girl to death after finding out the toddler had been raped by her nine-year-old son.
The South African woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, murdered her friend’s young daughter Asanda Mbuku in order to ‘silence her’ and protect her own child.
She killed the toddler with a blunt rock and dumped the body in her back garden, covering the body up with corrugated iron sheets – while Asanda’s family formed a desperate search party.
The 32-year-old mother told Gauteng High Court in Pretoria that she was looking after Asanda as a favour to her parents when she found her half naked near the door. She then realised that her son had raped the toddler.
‘I realised she was not moving and sprinkled her with water to wake her, but she did not,’ she told the court, adding that she killed her out of fear that she would wake up and tell people what had happened.
‘I took a rock and I hit her on the head to kill her. I hid her at the back of my garden. I did all this because my son had raped her and I did not want anyone to find out. I burnt her jacket and shoes.
‘When her parents came to the house to fetch her, I said I did not know where she was.’
The rapist nine-year-old was sent to school the next day as usual, but he couldn’t keep what he had done a secret and confessed all to his aunt when he got home.
Appearing at court on Wednesday, the woman pleaded guilty to one count of murder and another of attempting to obstruct justice, and was sentenced to 11 years in prison.
Judge Tshifhiwa Maumela said it was a shame she didn’t realise that her son would not have been arrested, as in South Africa a child under the age of 10 cannot be held criminally responsible for their actions.