GEORGE NEWS - A 28-year-old man arrested for the rape of a 69-year-old woman on Monday 2 July, died hours after his arrest in the Thembalethu holding cells. It is unclear at this stage if the man died of injuries he sustained in a beating by community members before his arrest.
In a statement Thembalethu police communications officer, Captain Dumile Gwavu says, "Bongani Qumbu (28), who comes from Uniondale, was rescued by police in Zone 9 from angry community members after he allegedly kicked down the door of the victim and threatened her with a knife before raping her. The man fell asleep next to the woman after raping her. She then called for help and the people who came to her rescue wasted no time in apprehending him."
According to information George Herald received, the suspect received medical treatment and he allegedly had no visible injuries when the police arrested him.
According Faith Mdaka, councillor of the area where the rape took place, the woman is recovering at home and still in much pain physically and emotionally.
The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) is investigating his death in police custody.
Ipid spokesperson Moses Dlamini said the police took the deceased to the cells and requested the emergency services personnel to treat his injuries.
"According to a police official, the ambulance personnel informed him that the deceased did not need any immediate treatment and that he could remain in custody. He was placed in the cells with other inmates. The deceased was naked due to the community members' alleged assault. He was found dead at 08:30. The victim sustained several abrasion wounds and it is suspected that he died of the injuries sustained prior to arrest. Ipid will investigate as to why the deceased was not taken to hospital for medical attention, as the post mortem confirms that he had extensive injuries."
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