The investigation into the death of 6-year-old Stacey Adams is underway, with one suspect behind bars. The little girl’s body was found dead in a shallow grave, near her home in Eastridge, Mitchells Plain, yesterday, however pathology tests to confirm her identity must still be concluded. The body was found buried next to a Wendy house, by members of the Child Rapid Response Unit.
Mitchell’s Plain community police cluster chairperson, Lucinda Evans explained that upon receiving a call from the joint operations officer, she mobilized members of the community to search for the child. Evans said that within five minutes of arriving at the scene, the Child Rapid Response Unit found a body.
Describing the events that subsequently transpired as “a horror story”, Evans said that the police still need to conclude the investigation about the details of the child’s disappearance.
Police spokesperson captain FC Van Wyk said that at about 15h00 on Saturday, Stacey’s grandmother, Laeeqah Adams, sent the child to her mother’s home in De La Rey Street, Eastridge.
“From what we were told was that the grandmother saw her last on Saturday afternoon and then reported her missing during the hours of the morning.
“The grandmother thought that she was at the mother and then the mother contacted the grandmother to tell her to bring the child over – only then it was discovered that the child was missing,” Evans stated.
According to the South African Police Service (SAPS), Stacey was reported missing at 15h00 at the Mitchells Plain police station, after which an immediate search was launched.
The search party included members of the neighbourhood watch, block watch and Community Police Forum (CPF).
Residents allegedly torched the home of the suspect’s sister in a bid to get their hands on the suspect, who was believed to be questioned by police inside the house. He stayed in the adjacent Wendy house. The fire was subsequently extinguished by a fire and rescue team.
Evans says CPF members will oppose any application for bail, made by the suspect.
“Nobody is out on bail, because the process still needs to happen. I don’t think that he will be going to court today – maybe tomorrow – because there are investigations that need to take place and forensics still need to do their bit.
“The Mitchell’s Plain CPF has already mandated their volunteers to be at court, so bail will definitely be opposed,” she added.
Evans noted that while the CPF has not had an opportunity to adequately engage with the family, the suspect is alleged to be in a romantic relationship with the little girl’s mother.
She confirmed that members of the family whose home was petrol bombed were removed to a place of safety.
Evans said a call has been made for social workers to assess the children who were in the home at the time of the bombing.
“This morning, we are facilitating with the Department Of Social Development to do the necessary intervention for that family whose house was bombed.”
Mitchells Plain police have registered a case of murder, with an additional charge of public violence expected to be lodged.
Anyone who has information that can assist in the investigation is requested to contact Mitchell’s Plain police at (021) 370-1600.