Ex-boyfriend had gun in one hand, knife in the other before double shooting
Police say the ex-boyfriend of a woman employed by Legal Aid SA entered her home with a gun in one hand and knife in the other, shortly before she was killed in an apparent murder-suicide in East London.
A case of murder and an inquest were registered after the double shooting on Thursday which left the legal fraternity reeling in shock in the Eastern Cape.
"It is alleged that while she was inside her car talking on the phone her ex-boyfriend entered the house carrying a firearm in one hand and a knife in the other hand," said police spokesperson Capt Hazel Mqala on Friday.
"He then asked the victim's whereabouts from the tenant but he was informed that she was not in the house. The suspect then walked outside and saw the victim getting out of her vehicle."
The woman was shot in the upper body. The man then turned the gun on himself and died, according to Mqala.
The two, aged between 49 and 52, were found dead outside a house in Jade Street in Amalinda, East London.
"The police and paramedics were called and they were both certified dead. A 9mm Norinco pistol with a serial number was found on the scene," added Mqala.
Legal Aid earlier condemned the incident and the scourge of gender-based violence.
"We are reeling from this tragic news," the organisation's Eastern Cape provincial executive, Hope Bambiso, said in a statement.
"Statistics show that three women die at the hands of their intimate partner every day in SA. This is unacceptable. We are offering our support to the family of our dear colleague and will fiercely honour her memory through our continued work to eradicate gender-based violence from our daily lives," he said.
Bambiso said his slain colleague had played a vital role in ensuring access to justice for awaiting-trial prisoners and incarcerated people, and was "well known as a helpful and reliable face of the justice system in the prisons".
Dr Lesley Ann Foster of Masimanyane Women's Rights International described the incident as horrific.
"We were absolutely horrified after hearing of such a tragedy, it is totally unacceptable. The main thing for us to do right now is provide counselling services to the family and colleagues, they must be really traumatised," she said.