National police commissioner General Khehla John Sitole says he hopes the life imprisonment served on a 29-year-old mother in connection with the rape of her two-month-old baby will serve as a deterrent to others wanting to protect the perpetrator instead of the victim.
A doctor‚ policeman and prosecutor stood up to ensure justice for the baby.
“Protecting the innocent and vulnerable is what we seek to ensure on a daily basis‚” said General Sitole‚ as he praised them for excelling at this goal in the baby rape case.
While the doctor has not been identified‚ it was the catalyst for the investigation. The doctor was the first to inform police in Soweto that a severely injured two-month-old baby had been admitted to the hospital.
Sergeant Enez Lekgoathi of the Orlando Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit was tasked with the investigation. During the initial interview‚ the mother claimed that the child had fallen from the bed. However‚ medical test results revealed that the baby had been raped. Her version of events changed continually‚ police said.
In the South Gauteng High Court‚ the case was prosecuted by senior state advocate Alivera du Plooy.
Sitole said Du Plooy and Sgt Lekgoathi “worked tirelessly together on this case and eventually achieved justice for the baby girl“.
The mother was convicted late last year and was yesterday sentenced to imprisonment of 25 years‚ despite the actual perpetrator not being identified as yet.
“This has set a precedent which will help prevent any person from shielding perpetrators of crime in future‚” said Gen Sitole.
“This may be little justice for the two-month-old baby‚ but the outcome of this case will surely serve to deter such criminality from taking place again.”
The identity of the mother is being kept confidential in order to protect her baby.
The baby is living with relatives.