March 23 2007 at 10:55AM
By Barry Bateman
Relatives of a Modimolle (Nylstroom) woman are blaming police for her brutal death and rape.
If police had reacted sooner, they claim, she might have been saved.
Isabel Walkenshaw's bruised and battered body was found near a railway bridge in a field in Modimolle, Limpopo, on Saturday.
She had been raped and strangled to death.
Billy Homan, Walkenshaw's uncle, said the incident happened on Friday night.
He said Walkenshaw, 35, was walking through the field on Friday evening with an unidentified, homeless couple to show them a house they could live in.
Homan said five men accosted Walkenshaw and the couple and dragged them into nearby bushes. There they allegedly started raping the homeless woman and told the homeless man to run away or he would be killed.
"The guy ran up the road and stopped a car. He asked the driver to take him to the police station but the driver suggested they go back to help the two women.
"As they neared the scene, the woman ran out of the bushes and got into the car," he said.
Homan said that in spite of hearing screams for help coming from the bushes, the three decided to go the police station to report the matter.
He said the driver of the car told police he heard screams from the bushes and they should investigate. "The police never went back to the scene. The police just wanted to take the woman to hospital," he said.
Homan said Walkenshaw's body was discovered by a passerby at about 8am on Saturday.
"Only then did the police begin to investigate," he said.
Homan wants to know why police did not go to the scene when they were told that someone was being attacked there. He said police were now trying to cover their tracks and are denying any wrongdoing.
Questions were put to the Modimolle police but no comment was received at the time of going to press.
Walkenshaw's funeral is scheduled for 10.30am today at the Modimolle Lede in Christus church.
This article was originally published on page 4 of Pretoria News on March 23, 2007