A one-year-old girl was rescued by members of Reaction Unit South Africa (RUSA) after her mother was allegedly stabbed and her father threatened to murder her in Verulam in KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday.
At about 4.51pm, reaction officers were dispatched to the corner of Dianthus Road and Rosemary Drive in Brindhaven, Verulam, after they were told that a woman was being attacked, RUSA said in a statement.
Upon arrival, a 38-year-old woman was found standing on the side of the road, bleeding from an injury to her left thigh.
She said that she and the father of her daughters, aged one and three, had been involved in an argument when he allegedly grabbed the baby and threw her on the pavement. He then allegedly stabbed his girlfriend once in the thigh before grabbing the child and fleeing the scene. The incident was witnessed by his older daughter and members of the public, according to RUSA.
“Reaction officers obtained a description of the suspect and went in search of him. He was found fleeing towards a dense bush in Mountview. Officers converged on the location and placed the suspect under arrest. The child was secured and transported back to her mother. Witnesses believed that the father was heading towards a dense bush near the Mountview tennis courts to [allegedly] murder the child during a fit of anger,” the statement read.
“The suspect explained to reaction officers that, during the argument, he grabbed a broken bottleneck and stabbed his girlfriend; however, according to witnesses, he used a knife in the attack.”
A search was conducted for the knife and bottleneck but these could not be located.
The man was arrested and is being detained at the Verulam police station.
The victim and her baby were transported to hospital by ambulance for medical attention.
According to RUSA, reaction officers have in the past attended to two separate calls of domestic violence involving the same couple.
In one incident, the man allegedly severely assaulted his girlfriend while shopping in the Verulam CBD. In a second incident, officers received reports that he had used a pellet gun to shoot her during an argument.
She did not register criminal cases against her attacker in both incidents, RUSA said.