Tavern owner granted bail in New Year’s Day stampede case

The owner of a tavern where 10 people died in a New Year’s Day stampede was granted bail in the Schweizer-Reneke Magistrate’s Court, North West police said today.

James Thepiso Lepholletse (47) was granted R40 000 bail and was expected to appear in court again on February 25, said Captain Aasje Botma.

Lepholletse was facing culpable homicide charges.

Seven men and three women, aged between 18 and 25, were trampled to death at the Basotho tavern in Ipelegeng township at 2.15am on Saturday.

The deceased were identified as Tshomo Ditloko, Samuel Mogokare, Lebogang Moyake, Boy Maano, Kelebogile Maruping, Seoka Montshiwagae, Bongani Malantw, Isaac Mothupi, Mpho Mokwena and Mapitso Makhobosi.

The cause of the incident was still unclear.

The North West police have requested community members not to take the law into their own hands after reports of mounting anger in the township.

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