Police hunt for alleged Palapye taxi rapist


PALAPYE: Palapye police is on the hunt for an unknown taxi driver that allegedly raped a 20-year-old Zimbabwean passenger recently. The incident happened on July 16, around eight in the evening.

According to police reports, the woman took a ride from the Extensions area to her rented house in Thomadithotse ward. There were other clients in the taxi when she embarked.

After dropping off the other clients at Extension Four the taxi driver requested to pick another client up at Extension Seven, which is across the road opposite from Extension Four.

The area is relatively new and is not completely built. It is not well lit at night and has some spaces that have bushes.  The driver allegedly took advantage of the woman and raped her inside his taxi before he ditched her. 

The matter was reported to the police on the same night with the woman being immediately taken to the Palapye Primary Hospital to verify if she was known carnally. 

Criminal Investigation Department (CID) officer-in-charge at Palapye police station assistant superintendent Kebonye Kodumane said, according to their interviews with the victim, the alleged rapist was driving a silver Honda Fit. 

He said the victim could not get the registration numbers of the vehicle when the alleged assailant fled. Kodumane warned the public to exercise caution when travelling at night and demand that they are taken directly to their destinations when travelling by taxi. 

“It is a difficult scenario as it is, but our investigations are ongoing. We are calling to the public to help us identify the alleged taxi driver,” he said, advising that the public should take a leaf out of the case and avoid falling prey to such undesirable elements. 

“Passengers don’t have to act friendly in the taxis and allow the drivers to move around picking up and dropping off others with them (still not taken to their destination), people should demand their right to be taken to their desired destinations without fear,” Kodumane said.

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