There has certainly been a surge in the media coverage of female murders this past month. Rape, murder, femicide, domestic violence and more have been the focus, with social media playing its own role by popularising hashtags such as #MenAreTrash.
The wave of outcry was only fuelled this past weekend when Stellies student Hannah Cornelius was found dead just outside Stellenbosch on Saturday.
But Cornelius isn’t the only Stellies student to fall victim to such an horrific crime.
TimesLive pulled out all the files relating to other murders of female students from Stellies from the past decade or so – the total number; four.
Let’s take a look:
Hannah Cornelius‚ 21
Cornelius and a male friend were hijacked in the early hours of Saturday morning. Her friend managed to escape but she was raped and murdered. Her body was found just outside Stellenbosch. A fourth suspect has been arrested and is set to appear in the Stellenbosch Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.
Robyn Pearce‚ 20
In 2016 the BA Humanities student was found in her mother’s flat in Sea Point. She had been stabbed several times. Her family-appointed lawyer William Booth said she lived at a residence in Stellenbosch. But before going on holiday she stayed at the flat. Her father‚ prominent cardiologist Dr Adrian Pearce‚ was hit by a vehicle while cycling in Pietermaritzburg in 2011. Construction worker Wasief Buxbey is currently standing trial for her murder.
Jacobus Eksteen said he loved her‚ wanted her to be his wife and have his children. But when Van Rensburg turned him down she had to pay. In 2012 he admitted‚ in court‚ how he repeatedly tried to render her unconscious so that he could kidnap her. He eventually shoved her in the boot of his car and raped her. When she died‚ he wrapped her in a duvet and buried her in the sand dunes in Elandsbaai.
Inge Lotz‚ 22
The cousin of Olympian Ryk Neethling was bludgeoned to death in her flat on March 16‚ 2005. She was completing her master’s degree in mathematics. In 2007 Neethling told the Sunday Times that she was ”an amazing girl with tremendous potential and a lot of love”. At the time the state claimed that someone had beaten her over the head with a blunt object – possibly an ornamental hammer – and stabbed her in the neck and chest repeatedly.
Her then boyfriend Fred van der Vyver stood trial for her murder. What ensued was possibly one of the most controversial criminal trials in the country. Van der Vyver was eventually acquitted. This year saw the launch of the book: Freddy Boy‚ The Untold Story. It was written by one of Van der Vyver’s lawyers‚ Advocate Barry Pienaar SC.
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