Karabo Mokoena’s lifeless body was tossed into a ditch in an open piece of land that serves as a common dumping ground for the Lyndhurst community in Johannesburg.
When TimesLIVE visited the site hours after her alleged killer appeared in court on Friday‚ tins‚ empty cement bags‚ cardboard boxes‚ wires and tree stumps were amongst the items found lying in the muddy pit.
Police believe Mokoena’s body was consumed by flames lit at the dumping site on April 29. Her boyfriend‚ Sandile Mantsoe‚ has been charged with her murder.
The fire left only a portion of her leg recognisable‚ sources have told TimesLIVE.
Lyndhurst resident Precious Ngomana was present the day Mokoena’s body was found.
She described marks etched in the sand near the ditch‚ which suggested that Mokoena’s lifeless body was dragged on the ground before it was tossed into the hole.
“One of the neighbours had called the police and I was curious about what was happening there‚ so I also went to see when I saw the police‚” said Ngomana.
Nongoma believed the crime had taken place in the early hours of the morning because when daylight broke‚ Mokoena’s body was still smouldering.
“There was a lot of blood there‚” she said‚ adding that a towel was also recovered from the crime scene.
Two weeks later traces of the incident were diminishing.
Only a small part of the dark fire patches remained. A string of yellow police tape‚ now trampled into the ground‚ was the only sign that this was a gruesome crime scene.
It is believed that Mokoena’s body was doused with petrol‚ a tyre placed around her neck and set alight‚ reducing most of her body to ashes.
A homeless man‚ dressed in black‚ dug around near the ditch to collect wood that had been soaked by the rains that had fallen earlier that afternoon.
The ditch‚ which lies behind a neatly trimmed park‚ is in plain view of a pathway used by scores of school children‚ men and women as they cross from one side of Lyndhurst to the other.