Whinsley Masara, Chronicle Reporter
A-19-YEAR-Old woman from Bulawayo was raped and robbed by two men who broke into her house in Cowdray Park suburb armed with knives, iron bars and an axe.
The incident came a day after a similar one occurred in Bulawayo’s Magwegwe West suburb.
In Cowdray Park the suspects used iron bars to force open a door and got away with three size 14 vehicle tyres, a 32 inch Samsung television set, cellphone, four blankets, three pairs of shoes, two cartons of bath soap, travelling bag and some packets of biscuits all valued at R7 305, $ 75 bond and P3 200.
The victim’s name has been withheld for ethical reasons. The incident occurred at around 2AM on Thursday.
Bulawayo Metropolitan Province acting police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube confirmed the incident and said investigations were underway.
“We are investigating a case of rape and robbery by two unknown suspects who are still at large.
“One of the suspects remained at the door while his accomplice proceeded to one of the bedrooms where the victim was asleep with her sister (21),” he said.
Insp Ncube said the suspect who held a knife and an axe threatened to harm the two sisters if they made any noise.
“His partner raped one of the victims in the presence of her sister. After he was done, he ordered the two victims to remain in their bedroom with their faces covered with a blanket.
“The robbers ransacked the house and took the property mentioned above. They carried the property to a nearby house within the same suburb and hid it in a room that is under construction while they went away to organise transport,” he said.
The owner of the house was awakened by some movements and went outside to investigate, hence, the discovery of the hidden property and he awakened some neighbours.
Insp Ncube said: “The suspects proceeded to a car park where they hired a kombi, from Mr Themba Mguni of Cowdray Park suburb, who drove a Toyota Hiace omnibus, registration number ADZ 1138.
“Together they went back to the house. They however found residents gathered around the stolen property and seeing this, they immediately fled from the scene leaving the hired driver behind.”
Residents asked the driver to ferry the stolen things to the police station where everything was positively identified by the owners. All the property was recovered but no arrests have been made so far.
Insp Ncube urged the public to secure their homes at all times and advised communities to report suspicious activities in their neighbourhoods.
“The public must always be alert and report any suspicious activity happening in their neighbourhoods. We are calling upon transport operators to be careful when hired at night and rather always alert police before engaging in such deals because it would end up appearing like they are also partners in crime.
“We expect members of the public to assist the fight against crime by partnering with police rather than assisting criminals to transport stolen property. We really expect these same drivers to be careful because the same incident is bound to occur at his own house while he is away at work someday,” he said.
On Wednesday at around midnight, a 44-year-old woman was gang raped at gunpoint by three armed robbers at her Magwegwe West home.
The assailants made off with cash and property worth more than $2 000.
One of the suspects has since been arrested.
The robbers pounced on the complainant’s home and got away with US$20, R200 and property worth about $2 100.
Some of the property was recovered after the arrested suspect led police to where it was being kept. — @winnie_masara