Almost a year after the fatal shooting of two-year-old Caitlin Ruiters, her alleged killers, Marcus Malgas and Gregory Van Staden, will hear their sentences on Tuesday in the Port Elizabeth High Court, which found the duo guilty of her murder among 11 other charges on Monday.
Malgas (24) was arrested in December 2015 and charged for the murder of the little girl. In January, members of the Gang Task Team arrested 29-year-old Van Staden in the street in Holland Park, Port Elizabeth, for the same crime.
Malgas was also linked to two other shooting incidents in Gelvandale (murder and attempted murder).
Ruiters was fatally shot on 14 December 2015 in Sagitarius Road Helenvale.
“It is alleged that at about 07:00, a 24 year-old man was walking in the street when two men approached him and starting shooting. A stray bullet struck Caitlin Ruiters in her chest,” police said then.
“The child was standing in front of her house when the shooting occurred. She succumbed to her injuries while on the way to the hospital.”
While awaiting his trial for Ruiters’ murder, Malgas had already been found guilty by the High Court in May on 11 other charges that included one for murder and was awaiting sentencing.
Malgas was found guilty on:
*One count of murder;
*Eight counts of attempted murder;
*One count relating to the unlawful possession of a firearm; and
*One count relating to the unlawful possession of ammunition.
“The conviction of Malgas is regarded being a significant victory for the Operation Lockdown PE? investigation team, which was established by the Minister of Police and the Acting National Commissioner of the SAPS to combat gang-related violence and criminal activities in the Northern Areas of Port Elizabeth,” said police spokesperson, Captain Sandra Janse van Rensburg then.
“We will continue to exert lawful pressure on those responsible for making life hell for communities through their violent and criminal activities in PE’s Northern Areas,” said the Deputy National Commissioner responsible for National Management Interventions, Lieutenant General Gary Kruser, on hearing the news of Malgas’ conviction.
He congratulated the entire team and urged them to continue to ensure that #?CrimeMustFall through getting back to the basics of proactive policing and the investigation of crime.