Hluleka Reserve attack: Husband out of ICU, 'emotional', as wife's remains return home

2019-09-20 16:42
Matthew and Karen Turner. (Facebook)

Matthew and Karen Turner. (Facebook)

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The husband of a pregnant woman who was fatally stabbed in an attack while the couple slept in their chalet at Hluleka Reserve on the Wild Coast, has been moved out of ICU after undergoing surgery for his stab wounds.

Karen Turner, 33, was killed in the early hours of Tuesday, while her husband, Matthew, was stabbed several times in the stomach while on holiday, her elder brother, Ian Crouch, said.

Earlier this week, Matthew told Crouch he recalled two men stabbing them while they were sleeping.

READ: Survivor recalls moment two men attacked him, killed pregnant wife - family

Speaking from hospital on Friday, Crouch told News24 his brother-in-law knew what had happened and that Karen was dead.

"He is talking and very emotional … that things will never be the same."

The couple's 23-month old son, who was in the chalet at the time of the attack, would visit the hospital on Friday afternoon to spend time with his dad before returning home with Crouch.

Crouch said they had managed to move his sister's body from Mthatha to Pietermaritzburg.

They intended cremating her and would have her funeral in Underberg next Friday. 

Karen - who was a locum teacher at Underberg Primary School - had been about three months pregnant and celebrated her birthday on Monday.

The couple and their son had been on their way to a wedding and had taken the week off to spend some time together. Their friends were staying in a chalet next door.

No one has yet been arrested.

'Tussle down the stairs'

Crouch said Matthew had told him he remembered being woken up by a man stabbing him in the stomach while another man stabbed his wife on the other side of the bed.

"He said he managed to sort of grab the guy and there was a bit of a tussle down the stairs. After that, he doesn't have any recollection."

According to police spokesperson Captain Dineo Koena, the neighbour heard loud noises in the early hours of the morning and went to knock on the door.

"The husband opened the door and he was bleeding. The wife was dead on her back," Koena said previously."There was no sign of forced entry and everything inside the house was upside down. It was not like a robbery because no valuables were taken."

Crouch told News24 earlier this week that all the windows and a sliding door off the balcony were open.

On Friday, Crouch said he got the impression the police were trying their best with the investigation and were looking for suspects.

"At this stage, they are treating everyone as suspects."

Private investigator

Crouch said the forensics and pathology team had visited the scene as well as high-ranking police officials who flew in from Port Elizabeth.

"I do believe that it is being given the attention it needs."

Magma Security director Shaheen Suleiman confirmed to News24 on Friday it was assisting with a private investigation and working with the police in the case.

The Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency (ECPTA) said it was not taking the incident lightly and was working with the private sector to ensure the safety of visitors to the province.

"Investigations of the incident are ongoing and is at a very sensitive stage. The ECPTA is doing everything in its power to co-operate with the police on any and all information they require to help solve this matter."

Read more on:    crime
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