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CT mom: Michaela Williams' murder highlights failure of our justice system

Angry and heartbroken relatives and community members packed the public gallery of courtroom 4 on Monday. Among them, the mother of a young woman raped and almost killed by the same man several years ago.

Family and community members gathered at the Wynberg Magistrates Court on 13 January 2019, where Michaela Williams' murder accused appeared in court. Picture: Lauren Isaacs/EWN

CAPE TOWN - A Cape Town mother has told Eyewitness News that the justice system had failed her family after a man who raped and attempted to kill her daughter was released on parole last year.

That same man appeared in the Wynberg Magistrates Court on Monday in connection with the murder of 12-year-old Michaela Williams.

The girl was last seen alive outside her home in New Horizons in Pelican Park last Tuesday. The accused led police to an area in Schaapkraal, in Philippi, two days later where Williams’ body was found.

The case against the man accused of Williams's murder has been postponed to April.

Angry and heartbroken relatives and community members packed the public gallery of courtroom 4. Among them, the mother of a young woman raped and almost killed by the same man several years ago.

The accused, who cannot be named due to court order, was handed a 20-year sentence in 2005 after he raped an 8-year-old girl, stabbed her in the heart with a pair of scissors and left her to die in bushes along Swartklip Road in Mitchells Plain.

She was found alive the next day, covered in blood. Her distraught mother said she's moved her daughter, who is now 23, to a safe space after her killer threatened to find her after his release to “finish what he had started”.

“The time when we went to court, he testified with a smile that he killed my child. The day when she testified against him, he said it’s not her because he killed her. I ask myself, who will be his next victim? I hope this time, he will be put away for life.”

The woman said her family knew her daughter’s attacker well. He was also no stranger to Williams and her family.

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