A 17-year-old suspect has been charged with the murder of Mapula “Meiki” Khune, the sister of soccer star Itumeleng Khune.
The teenager was charged on Friday and is expected to appear in the Ventersdorp Children’s Court on Monday, said police spokesperson Colonel Adéle Myburgh.
“His appearance in the Children’s Court is as prescribed by the Child Justice Act (Act 75 of 2008). It is alleged that on Thursday, 4 March 2021 at about 05:00, neighbours saw smoke coming from a house in Extension 2, Tshing, Ventersdorp. Emergency services [officials] were called who, after forcing entry into a back room, discovered the severely burnt body of Khune on top of her bed.”
Police initially opened an inquest docket, but they are now investigating a murder after further information was obtained, according to Myburgh.
Khune’s death on Thursday sent shockwaves through the community of Tshing. The 27-year-old was sleeping in a back room, next door to her grandmother’s main house, when the incident happened.
Her body was burnt beyond recognition. Only the back room was destroyed by the blaze.
Police have since been quelling clashes in the community as residents suspected of committing the crime were hunted down and assaulted, said Myburgh.
“Additional cases of assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm have been reported since Friday, as community street patrollers and family members have allegedly been assaulting alleged perpetrators for the murder of Khune.”
Provincial police commissioner, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, lauded police for their speedy response and for ensuring the arrest of the alleged perpetrator within one day of the killing.
Itumeleng Khune, who plays for Kaizer Chiefs Football Club, missed the team’s CAF Championship game on Saturday at FNB Stadium. He took compassionate leave to be with his family.
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