In an endeavour to ensure the building of safer communities, especially the safety of women and children, Lehurutshe Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (FCS), secured a 45-years imprisonment against Othusitse Ernest Seleka (26).
Seleka was on Friday, 21 June 2019, found guilty and sentenced to 45 years direct imprisonment on two counts of rape and one of attempted rape and sentenced to 45 years direct imprisonment (a mandatory sentence term of 40 years).
In the first incident on Monday, 28 July 2014, at 17:50, it was reported that a 17-year-old female was at a tuck shop in Motswedi village when Seleka friendly introduced himself and volunteered to walk her home. They were both walking and approaching a dry river bed when Seleka forced the girl into the dry river bed and threatened to stab her. The accused then threw the victim on the ground and raped her. Seleka’s attempt to rape the victim for the second time was disturbed by some boys who came down the road next to the river. It was at that point that the victim managed to run away and later went back to the tuck shop to enquire about the identity of the suspect. The matter was ultimately reported to the police, who arrested the suspect shortly after the incident.
In another unrelated incident, Seleka broke and gained entrance into a house in Motswedi village on Sunday, 28 December 2014. The court heard that the accused was inside the house when a 64-year-old woman woke up and found Seleka in the passage. He was just about to rape the woman when she screamed. The woman’ son came out of his room and managed to arrest the accused.
In a third separate incident on Friday, 13 November 2015, Seleka used the same modus operandi as in the first incident at the tuck-shop. He introduced himself to the 16-year-old minor as Ernest, then took her the to the dry river bed and repeatedly raped her for more than six hours. After the ordeal, the accused gave the victim R50, 00 note and promised to buy her a pair of “All Star” takkies before telling her not to report the matter.
In a rape and murder committed in Groot Marico on Saturday, 1 September 2018, Rapula Mothibedi (40) was sentenced to 40 years imprisonment by the Zeerust Regional Court on Tuesday, 25 June 2019.
It was disclosed that an 18-year-old victim was visiting her boyfriend at Reboile Location, Groot Marico, where Rapula Mothibedi also stayed in a shack behind the main house.
The accused took the victim, who was alone at home, to his shack during the day, then raped and strangled her to death. It came out during the trial that after committing the crimes, the accused hid the victim’s body under the bed. Preliminary investigation showed that the victim’s body was dropped in the bushes where it was found at about 11:00 on Sunday, 2 September 2018 near the N4 Road.
Subsequent to an intensive investigation, Rapula Mothibedi was arrested shortly after the body was discovered.
The accused was sentenced as follows:
Count 1: Rape- 25 years imprisonment
Count 2: Murder- 15 years imprisonment.
The North West Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Baile Motswenyane, congratulated the two detectives for ensuring that perpetrators are removed from society. She said that the sentences will send a clear message that the police, working together with other role players, will prioritise crimes against women and children.