Three suspects, including a minor, appeared in the Atlantis Magistrates’ Court yesterday for the murder of two-year-old Braydon Graaff, who was shot while in his mother’s arms.
The suspects appeared in camera, and no media or members of the public were allowed in court to follow proceedings as one of the accused is a 17-year-old minor.
The two other suspects are both 18 years old.
Little Braydon died tragically on Saturday, 22 October, when he was hit by a stray gang bullet close to his house in Robinvale.
The two were on their way to visit Braydon’s father who lives close by.
The child died while a neighbour ran, carrying him to the nearest hospital.
The bullet that killed Braydon first pierced through the hand of his 24-year old mother, Rostan Graaf’s, before entering his little chest.
Police arrested the three suspects the following day.
Yesterday, Atlantis residents picketed outside the magistrates’ court, demanding that no bail be given to the three accused.
Community leader and children and women’s rights activist, Barbara Rass, says Atlantis residents have had enough of murder and violence and demanded justice for Brayden and his family.
The area has turned into a warzone as the Americans and 28s fight over turf.
“We are here to ask that bail not be given to these people. We don’t want any more innocent people and children getting hurt anymore,” she says.
“We want to prevent this from happening again, children are a gift from God and our future.
“This is not the wild west, this is Atlantis. We have our differences here but in this case we as a community are standing together.
“We want peace, we want all the shootings to be over. Justice needs to be done.”
Braydon’s family was not at court yesterday, and Rass said the family was still in shock over his untimely death.
“The family of little Braydon are unfortunately not present at court or available for comment as the matter is still too raw for them to deal with,” Rass told the Daily Voice.
Lieutenant Colonel Andre confirmed the suspects were in court and that they will remain in custody until their next court appearance.