There have still been no arrests in connection with the brutal attack on an 82-year resident from Phalaborwa, last week. Julie Haremse was viciously attacked in her home at around 13:00 last week Thursday by an unknown man who accosted her inside her home in Monna Street and stabbed her multiple times in the throat. She was then bound with duct tape and left in her garage.
It is reported that her assailant then entered her home and helped himself to something to eat from the kitchen before watching television in her lounge. Apparently Harmse’s pet Parakeet sounded the alarm and the suspect shoved the bird into a drawer in an effort to keep it quiet.
Although the exact timeline is still not certain, it is believed that the man spent the night in Harmse’s bed before dressing in clothes from her cupboard (belonging to her late husband) and fleeing the scene that following morning.
Neighbours noticed that something was off when they spotted her car outside the gate and the garage door slightly ajar. Upon investigating, they found her on the floor of her garage, still bound with the duct tape.
Harmse was rushed to Mediclinic Tzaneen where she was treated for the multiple stab wounds to her throat and defensive wounds to her left arm. At the time of going to print she was recovering well and medical staff said she might be back at home by the weekend.
On Monday morning Bulletin contacted a family member about the incident who requested that we contact her again on Wednesday. We could not reach her again. We spoke to one of her long-time neighbours who said that he is certain the man in question is the same man who followed him into the bush across the road, about a week before.
The bush in question is right across from Harmse’s home. It borders President Steyn Street which runs parallel to the airfield. “I believe that this man sat in the bushes under cover of the long grass, and watched the neighbourhood. Julie’s neighbour was also robbed about a week ago.”
According to the police, the suspect made off with Harmse’s cell phone, laptop and a small amount of money. A case of housebreaking was opened and is currently being investigated.
This has sparked an outcry among the community over social media who feel that the charge should be escalated to attempted murder and assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
By: Far North Bulletin