WATCH: Community jeers as Courtney's alleged killer appears in court

By News24 Wire
17 May 2017

They could be heard screaming "Hang him!" and "We'll kill him!" as they expressed anger over the situation.

Thousands of community members gathered outside Goodwood Magistrate's Court early Tuesday morning, in anticipation of the appearance of Courtney Pieters (3)'s alleged murderer.

The 40-year-old man accused of killing the 3-year-old in Elsies River appeared in court for the first time today. Mortimer Saunders, wearing a red T-shirt, appeared on charges of rape and murder.He looked visibly concerned. Courtney was last seen alive playing in front of her home in Elsies River on May 4. Her body was subsequently found in a shallow grave next to abandoned railway tracks in the Epping Industrial center on Sunday, roughly two kilometers from her home.

The courtroom was crowded with journalists and members of the public sitting on the floor.

Several police officers were stationed at the entrance of the courtroom and refused to allow any additional people into the room.

There was also a line of police officers between the public gallery and dock to protect the suspect.

Magistrate Paul Visagie warned the public that he will not allow any disruptions in his courtroom and the audience was repeatedly asked to keep quiet.

Saunders did not apply for bail for fear of his life. For the same reason, he will apply for a subsequent hospitalization in a hospital unit.

He remains in custody. The case was postponed until 24 May.

Source: News24 Wire

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