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A group of unidentified men accosted the three Tsolo women while they were crossing grazing fields on their way home.

2024 got off to grim start in Tsolo in the Eastern Cape as three women fell prey to a horrifying attack, with one losing her life on New Year’s Day.

The murder victim was fatally stabbed following her rape ordeal.

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According to reports, a group of unidentified men accosted the women as they were crossing grazing fields on their way home at around 7pm.

Armed with knives

Warrant Officer Majola Nkohli, the police spokesperson, disclosed that two of the assailants, armed with knives, threatened the victims, demanding cash and cellphones.

The women, aged between 18 and 19, were robbed of their cellphones and thereafter were subjected to sexual assault.

“When one of the victims resisted, she was reportedly stabbed in the upper body,” Warrant Officer Nkohli said.

The two men then tied two of the victims before callously throwing them into a nearby stream.

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Despite this ordeal, the victims managed to free themselves and promptly reported the incident to their relatives.

Murder case

Tragically, the third victim was discovered lifeless at the scene, leading to the opening of a murder case along with three additional counts of rape for further investigation.

Law enforcement authorities are now urging anyone with information that could aid in the arrest of the suspects to contact the nearest police station. Tips can also be shared via the Crime Stop hotline at 08600 10111.

Expressing her deepest condolences to the family of the deceased teenager, Provincial Commissioner Lt Gen Nomthetheleli Mene conveyed her worry about the surge in reported rape cases during the festive period.

Lt Gen Mene is advising women to remain vigilant at all times, especially when intoxicated, and to avoid walking home late at night and in secluded spots.

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