On Monday afternoon at around 5pm on July 27, friends of the Brand family at Hartswater in the Northern Cape found nobody home and became suspicious when they noticed blood and the house ransacked. They phoned earlier and became concerned when nobody answered. The family’s vehicles also appeared to be missing, as they realized something horrible was wrong. A desperate search for the family was launched and following an arrest later that evening, the gruesome events of the triple murder on Sunday unfolded. Danie Brand(83), his wife Breggie(73), and their daughter Elzabie(54) had been brutally murdered with a crowbar.
Elzabie Brand apparently visited her parents over the weekend and her missing car was later recognized on the N18 just past Pudimoe on Monday around 11pm. The suspects had replaced the vehicle’s number-plates and according to the Community Safety Unit, four suspects were arrested and questioned.
The suspects pointed out to the police where Elzabie’s body could be found in the vicinity of Buxton near Taung against the Ghaap’s mountain. However, the area is extremely rugged and the terrain is difficult to navigate.
The following morning, drones were used to search the area and the bodies of the victims were eventually located, hidden under some bushes and covered with rocks.
Arrests made for the triple murder of the Brand family
The teamwork and the quick response of local farmers, community members, Afriforum, and the local police led to the arrest of several suspects. One woman found with the suspects is believed not to be linked to the terrorist attack, while another suspect initially escaped but was later arrested.
National police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo confirmed the arrests of three people and that Elzabie’s body had been found.
“The incident was reported to the police [on Monday] after a family member residing in Johannesburg suspected that something was wrong when he was unable to get in touch with his parents and sister since Sunday,” Naidoo said.
National Police Commissioner Khehla Sitole has welcomed the arrest of five suspects linked to the robbery, kidnapping and murder of the Brand family [on Tuesday].
Northern Cape police have recovered a Sahara laptop and Samsung J5 cellphone which were pawned at a shop for R400 at Vaaltyn village in the Taung area.
Brig Mohale Ramatseba said police also recovered a handbag at the home of one of the suspects, Khomotso Mpumlwana, containing one of the three victims’ driving license, identity document, and store cards.
Arrests made for the Attack
Five suspects were arrested and appeared in the Hartswater magistrate’s court.
Mpumlwana, 43, Tshepo Visagie, 36, Donald Seolesang, 20, Tshepaone Melato, 19, and Realeboga Manyedi, 18, are charged with robbery, kidnapping, and murder.
Northern Cape National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson, Mojalefa Senokotsoane, says the case has been postponed to January 7.
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[Disclaimer: as a small publisher relying on volunteers – our reports are non-exhaustive of the Crimes against Humanity in South Africa – we report as much as we can and advise readers to do their own diligence]