A man believed to be the Mangaung serial rapist was placed under arrest, on Thursday, 13 years after he pillaged women from the Free State metro.
Who is the Mangaung serial rapist?
At this time, police have not revealed personal details of the man said to be responsible for sexually assaulting more than 13 women.
According to police spokesperson Sergeant Peter Kareli, the Mangaung serial rapist is 34 years old and it took the district’s Tracing intervention Task Team two weeks to track him down.
No further information on the suspect has been made available at this time, only that he is currently in police custody and will make his first public appearance as an accused sexual deviant at the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Monday 17 January 2022.
What we know about his patterns, how he was caught
For more than a decade, the suspect has eluded Mangaung police. The first time he caught the attention of law enforcement was in 2009, after a woman reported she was raped by a man who had wielded a knife and threatened to kill her if she did not oblige.
Similar cases soon followed and between 2009 and 2013, police precincts in Mangaung had 13 cases of sexual assault opened, all with the same story.
Authorities knew then that the serial rapist who, in 2009, was only 21 years old, used the threat of murder as a way of soliciting control over his victims.
“It is alleged that the suspect surprised his victims by sneaking from behind and [grabbing] them by the neck, threatening to stab them. He [would] then drag the victim to either an open space or an empty house where he [raped] them and [ran] away when done,” Sgt Kareli revealed.
His hunting grounds, police added, were in Bloemspruit, a suburb with expansive industrial infrastructure, situated more than 16km away from central Bloemfontein.
The search for the suspect yielded no leads and for more than 13 years, detectives shuddered at the thought of a sexual deviant still prowling the streets, possibly assaulting more women.
However, police never abandoned their search for the Mangaung serial rapist and sure enough, a DNA database search initiated this month resulted in a match.
“The 34-year-old suspect was arrested after two weeks of tracking and tracing by the dedicated team of police officials today Thursday 13 January 2022,” police said.
The man’s identity will be unveiled at his first court appearance next week Monday, where he also faces attempted murder charges.