Monday, January 20, 2003


Sea Point attack: seventh man dies

The men were shot execution style in this room
The men were shot execution style in this room

A seventh victim of today's attack on a Sea Point massage parlour has died. This morning, police found the bodies of six men, shot execution style with their throats slit, at a house in Graham Road. Three others, seriously injured, were admitted to two hospitals in Cape Town.

Philippa Johnson, spokesperson for Groote Schuur Hospital, said three of the injured were admitted this morning, and one had died at 8 am. "One has died and the remaining two are in a critical condition in the ICU," she said.

Ria Kirsten, Somerset Hospital medical superintendent, said a young man had been admitted, but would be transferred to Groote Schuur later in the day. "He is in a serious, but stable condition."

Police call scene horrific

Etienne Terblanche, police spokesperson, said one of the four injured men was seen running out of the house with wounds to his neck and head to a service station in nearby Main Road.

The six men who were killed in the massage parlour had all been tied up and shot in the head at close range. Their throats had also been slit. Police, who rushed to the parlour after neighbours notified them of shots fired around 4:30 am, described the scene that greeted them when they arrived as "horrific".

Terblanche said there was "an incredible amount of blood about" and therefore it was initially difficult to determine the exact wounds. "When we arrived, the injured were crawling around on the floor," he said.

Terblanche said the house was rented out and was run as a massage parlour, apparently for gay men. Each room in the house served as a massage suite and the walls were decorated with graphic pornographic images. Bondage equipment was also found in the house. There are signs on the front of the house with the words "No cheques accepted".

Police are not yet certain whether the six dead were all clients or whether some of them were masseurs. Faced with a barrage of speculative questions from reporters about possible links between the massacre and drug dealers and protection rackets, Terblanche would not be drawn on the leads police were following. "At this stage we are investigating all possibilities. It is obviously a very early stage of the investigation. We are questioning people and putting the puzzle together," he said.

Asked if the shootings were all execution style in the back of the head, Terblanche said: "Let's not go into graphic detail."

Terblanche said police did not know if there any other people in the house at the time of the attack, besides those who were killed and wounded. Police, trying to establish who worked at the premises, took a statement from a client who arrived at the house shortly after the shooting.

— Sapa

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Created: January 22, 2003
Last modified: January 22, 2003
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