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Father is in hospital under police guard after three children died from what is suspected to be poisoning

Media Statement
South African Police Service
Office of the Provincial Commissioner Gauteng


GAUTENG - Police have opened a case of murder and attempted murder following the death of three boys aged 16, 13, and six in Ratanda near Heidleburg on Thursday, 26 May 2022. The fourth child, a 10-year-old boy, was rushed to hospital.  The four children are alleged to have consumed a poison infused drink.

Police were called to a scene at a Secondary School in Ratanda and on arrival, they found two boys, aged 13 and 16, already certified dead by paramedics. At the same time, police received information that there are other two boys from a nearby Primary School, aged six and 10, who were rushed to a clinic after they fell ill at the school. The six-year-old boy was declared dead on arrival at the clinic while the 10-year-old is reported to be in a serious condition.

The police proceeded to the siblings’ home but on arrival, they found the boys’ father unconscious in the house. He was taken to hospital under police guard as it is alleged that he might be involved in the alleged poisoning of his children.

The SAPS Forensic Specialists were also called to the scene. The police will await the postmortem results which will determine the exact cause of death.


Brig Brenda Muridili
071 686 9425