An Afrikaans primary-schoolgirl was grabbed in the Dr Havinga Laerskool in Roodepoort, shoved to the floor and strangled by an adult white man. (From the picture taken during his arrest, the man was white).
The details of the trial are not made available because the victim is a minor. The girl nearly died and was unconscious when she was found.
She was not sexually assaulted and the motive for the attack remains unknown. There was nothing robbed.
Journalist Mathilde Myburgh reports in the Roodepoort Record:
“Mother speaks out: “Her daughter was allegedly grabbed in the school’s bathroom, shoved to the floor and strangled by an adult man before she lost consciousness.
The mother of the girl that was assaulted at Laerskool Dr Havinga in middle March decided to tell the Record her version of things in a letter on condition of anonymity. A 26-year-old man was arrested in connection with the girl’s assault on 22 April in Lindhaven. Details of the Roodepoort Magistrate Court’s case have not been made available.
What follows is her letter (translated from Afrikaans):
“I am the mother of the girl that was assaulted at Laerskool Dr Havinga. I don’t want our names or faces published because I need to protect my daughter. So many stories, both true and untrue versions are doing the rounds and that is why I decided to react on your coverage of events.
“Our daughter was innocently sitting in front of a classroom and waiting for us after school that day. There were sport activities at the school which meant that other children and a multitude of teachers were around. Her attacker approached her under the false pretence that his daughter’s school bag was left behind in the girl’s bathroom.
He asked my daughter to please check the bathroom for him and retrieve the bag if it was there. She agreed and he followed her into the bathroom. She was grabbed from behind. She started screaming. He pushed her to the ground and started strangling her.
She lost consciousness. The attacker fled.
“We believe it to be a miracle that she isn’t dead, wasn’t kidnapped and not sexually abused.
Nobody came to her rescue or heard her screams. Psalm 91 rings true, because in her desperation it was God that protected her.
She was very traumatised and had bruises and scratches all over her little neck. Her eyes were raw and red and bloodshot for two weeks after the attack. Although she is healthy now, I’m sure it is an experience that will be with her for a lifetime.
“We want to thank the community for their help, support and prayers after the attack. I don’t hold a grudge against the attacker.
Judgement is by God alone, it is not my place to judge him. We also want to thank Mr Visser [school principal] as well as the staff and school governing body (SGB) of Laerskool Dr Havinga, who deserves praise for their outstanding help and care.
We appreciate the teacher’s attentiveness that led to the arrest of the suspect.”
Suspect arrested for Dr Havinga girl’s assault