Freed to attack again

Gavin Gawanab was out on bail in other pending cases of rape and attempted rape when he allegedly raped and mutilated a little girl.

31 October 2018 | Crime

Child rape suspect Gavin Gawanab, who was arrested in the early yesterday morning in Katutura's Havana location following a police manhunt, has a string of pending rape and attempted rape cases. All the cases are before the Katutura Magistrate's Court and some date back to when Gawanab (20) was still a minor.

Yet other charges against him were withdrawn because of incomplete investigations and a missing docket. Gawanab, whose name is spelt different ways in his court records, was out on bail when he allegedly cut an eight-year-old's vagina before raping her last Friday. He went on the run and hid in the mountains after the gruesome attack at Farm Satan Locht in the Khomas Region.

The police appealed for help earlier this week, as their initial efforts to capture him had been unsuccessful. They thanked the public for helping them track him down in a Havana shack in the early hours of yesterday morning.



Cellmates attack Gawanab

The police said yesterday that Gawanab had already been assaulted by some of his cellmates in the Wanaheda police cells.

Gawanab appeared in the Katutura Magistrate's Court yesterday on a previous rape charge dating back to last year, for which he was granted bail.







Magistrate Johannes Shuuveni ordered that Gawanab's bail of N$1 500 be cancelled and that he be remanded in custody in connection with this charge.





The matter was postponed to 5 December for laboratory results that are pending.

Court documents show that Gawanab has been involved in sexual crimes since the age of 15.

In 2013, an attempted rape and assault case was opened against him when he was still a minor.

In 2014, another attempted rape case was opened against him and he was granted bail of N$600.

The case was postponed to 18 November 2015. However, the State withdrew the case because witnesses failed to turn up at court. His bail money was refunded.

Another rape case was laid against Gawanab in 2016 and this matter has since been transferred from the Katutura Magistrate's Court to the Regional Court. The case was postponed to 11 March next year. He also received bail in this matter.

Other cases against Gawanab include a charge of assault by threat. This case was opened in 2016, but was withdrawn because the forensic investigation was not completed.



In January last year, a charge of housebreaking and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm was laid against Gawanab. This case was provisionally withdrawn because the docket went missing. According to the court documents, Gawanab will be re-summoned once the docket is found.

In April last year, Gawanab was accused of assault with intent to do cause grievous bodily harm, but the matter was struck from the roll because the forensic investigation was not completed. He can be summoned again if the investigation is completed.



'Heinous crime'

Gawanab will appear before court today in connection with the rape and mutilation of an eight-year-old girl. It is alleged that he cut the girl's genitals with a knife and raped her.

Police said the “heinous crime” occurred on Friday at about 16:00 at the farm Satan Locht.

It is alleged that the girl and another child had been left in Gawanab's care. He apparently threatened to harm the children and the other child ran away.

Gawanab got hold of a knife and allegedly tried to rape the girl, but penetration could not take place and he then cut her genitals and raped her.

According to the police, Gawanab then fled into the mountains and a manhunt ensued, but at that time it yielded no results. The girl was admitted to the Windhoek Central Hospital in a critical condition.

After the media circulated his photo on social media, the police arrested Gawanab in the early hours of yesterday morning.

According to Chief Inspector Kauna Shikwambi the police had received a tip-off that Gawanab was hiding in a shack in the Havana location.

Gawanab was arrested between midnight and 01:00.

ELLANIE SMIT

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