Suspect, 19, arrested after Bonnievale couple are burnt, stabbed and shot
A 19-year-old man has been arrested in possession of a .22 rifle allegedly stolen during a robbery in which a farmer and his wife were burnt with boiling water at Bonnievale in the Western Cape.
Tool Wessels and his wife Liezel were attacked on their farm Kapteinsdrif on Monday night. Wessels was shot dead while Liezel was stabbed in the chest after at least four suspects broke into their house.
The suspects took the safe, which sources suggest contained firearms.
A manhunt is under way in the Eastern Cape, where it is suspected the four suspects fled after the attack. The 19-year-old arrested with the rifle on Tuesday is said to be a Bonnievale local.
Police spokesperson Lt-Col Andrè Traut said the teenager was taken into custody for questioning regarding the murder and attempted murder.
"The suspect is scheduled to make a court appearance once he has been charged. The other suspects involved in the incident are yet to be arrested," said Traut.
Die Burger reported on Wednesday that the couple had been tied up and burnt with boiling water during the robbery. Liezel, who at one stage lost consciousness, eventually managed to escape and seek help.
Friends of the Wessels family gave their support on social media and posts were met with outpourings of grief.
Lize-Marie Viljoen, a Facebook user and friend of the Wessels' two daughters, posted a message on Tuesday morning motivating her friends.
Another friend, Lize Simon, posted a lengthy ode to the Wessels, an excerpt of which translates as follows.
"What about the girlfriend you played netball with all these years and who laughed, with the friendly, sincere heart - of course, because it flows from her father and mother's sincere caring-hearts which nurtured her - who is now left behind in an awful tragedy? A lifelong 'Comfort Zone' which was suddenly converted into a crime scene and an unknown place of hurt and confusion. Uncertainty. Fear," it read.
"Lord, I deliver the Wessels to you tonight. I pray for Aunt Liezel for speedy healing and recovery. Lord, I pray that you will bless this family. I pray that you cure their hearts piece by piece. I pray that you take the dreaded pictures out of their mind," it continued.