A convicted rapist released on parole six months ago has been arrested for the rape and murder of a Mitchells Plain girl this week.
Top cops have confirmed to Daily Voice they have caught “the main suspect” for the murder of 11-year-old Stacha Arends.
The 31-year old suspect has been identified by police sources as Randy Tango.
Police said on Wednesday, a second man is currently being probed and an arrest was imminent.
Tango is a neighbour of Stacha in Matroosberg Street, Tafelsig.
Police say they have “watertight” evidence, which includes blood-stained clothing obtained from a house, as well as a statement from a witness.
It was also revealed Stacha had been lured to her death by another child.
She was raped and killed at a house before her body was dumped on a nearby soccer field, according to police.
Police sources say the suspect was released on parole six months ago after serving time for rape.
A press briefing at Lentegeur Police Station was chaired by Mitchells Plain Cluster Commander, Major General Gregory Goss, Mitchells Plain Station Commander, Brigadier Cass Goolam, and Steenberg Police Station Commander, Colonel Jan Alexander.
A solemn Goss revealed Stacha “was brutally raped and killed”.
The child’s naked body was found on Tuesday morning just after 2am on a soccer field at the Swartklip Centre, in Tafelsig.
He says two suspects were taken into custody within hours of the discovery.
The Grade 7 Tafelsig Primary School learner disappeared on Monday afternoon from a neighbour’s house where she had been watching movies with her friend.
Stacha was told her mother was looking for her, and had willingly gone with two men waiting outside, Goss says.
“We can comfortably say we have arrested the main suspect in the rape and killing of the child. The other one we are still investigating,” the top cop said.
“The child was watching TV, and then they sent another child to call [Stacha] out of the house, under the [pretense] that the mother is calling her.
“They took [Stacha] with them, then went and did their things with the child.”
Goss says detectives worked non-stop for 24 hours at two different scenes — a house in Tafelsig and the field where Stacha’s body was found — where crucial evidence was obtained.
He said the main suspect was positively linked to the murder through “blood-stained clothes”.
Goolam says police managed to intervene just in time when angry residents tried to set the bushes alight where Stacha was found.
He asked community members not to interfere with crime scenes as vital evidence could be lost.
Goss says the murders of Stacha and Rene-Tracy Roman, 13, of Lavender Hill, should be an eye-opener for parents to always be aware of their children’s whereabouts.
Rene-Tracy disappeared on March 10 after she went to a nearby shop, and her body was found hidden in a neighbour’s Wendy house in St Agatha Crescent.
Andrew Plaatjies, 50, was arrested for the murder and is expected to appear at Wynberg court on April 4.
Goss warned that child killers are often known to the victim and community. He says it’s become a trend for kids to be killed because of parental negligence.
“The suspects are not people who are unknown, normally, look at the Lavender Hill case, the suspect lived three doors away,” says Goss.
“In terms of the law, parents can be charged [for negligence], although not in these cases, but we can create awareness that parents must look after their kids.”
A memorial service is being held for Rene-Tracy at 7pm at her home on Thursday.
Meanwhile, 10 educare centres in Tafelsig will be marching at 10am from Paulsberg Road on Thursday to protest against violence against children.