Cape Town - A 62-year-old grandmother has been strangled to death and sexually assaulted on her Philippi farm, allegedly by a couple she “rescued” from the streets and offered accommodation in a shack on her property.
Hester Koch’s granddaughter, Jade White, described how Koch was “viciously murdered by the people she did everything for”.
Hester Marie Koch (left) was raped and murdered allegedly by people living on the property of the farm she stayed on with her husband Arnold Schultz (right). PICTURE: DAVID RITCHI. Credit: INLSA
Koch, a pensioner, lived on the farm with her partner, Arnold Schultz.
Three months ago she took in a couple and their two children who she’d found begging at traffic lights nearby. The couple told Koch that they had lost all their belongings in a fire. The woman was pregnant.
White said she had helped the woman while she was in labour less than a month ago. “I should have left her there to suffer. I am angry and bitter and wish my gran never met them.”
White, 24, of Eerste River, said the whole family pitched in to help make the two-bedroom shack comfortable for the couple and their children.
A few weeks after moving on to Koch’s farm, they started getting “cheeky” with Koch and Schultz, she said. “They started smoking a lot of tik and stealing whatever they could find.”
Koch asked the family to leave a week ago. The woman allegedly lured Koch out of the house by knocking on her bedroom window and asking her to open because she needed to get supplies for the baby. Koch allegedly told Schultz that she was going to open the door for the woman.
Schultz fell asleep again and was woken up by the couple and two men who told them “Koch is lying dead in the shed” when he asked where his partner was.
The men apparently tied Schultz up with his neck ties and ransacked the house for about 45 minutes.
They took his bakkie, which was recovered by the police on Tuesday.
Koch was allegedly found with a pillow case over her head and a belt around her neck.
Police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel said that four suspects were arrested on Tuesday and were due in court on Thursday.