There were reports on Wednesday of a police breakthrough in the double murder of University of the Western Cape (UWC) student Jesse Hess and her grandfather, Chris.
Speaking to CapeTalk's John Maytham, Jesse's aunt, Sandy Hess, has confirmed that the suspect arrested by police is a close family member.
The bodies of 19-year-old Jesse and her 85-year-old grandfather were discovered in their Parow flat on 30 August.
Hess says the breakthrough after months of dead ends came after police linked the suspect to the rape of a 16-year-old girl in Hanover Park on Monday.
He is very close. My aunt is his mom.— Sandy Hess, Aunt of Jesse Hess
He used the same modus operandi and that's why they linked him to the case.— Sandy Hess, Aunt of Jesse Hess
Hess says at the time of the double murders the family had understood the perpetrator must be known to the family as there had been no sign of forced entry, but had no idea it would be "so close to home".
She describes the news as "a heavy blow", saying there had been no tell-tale source of conflict among family members who have always been very close.
We were constantly in fear because we didn't know who it was and is the person going to come back. Hopefully tonight I'll get some sleep.— Sandy Hess, Aunt of Jesse Hess
We're coping, that's all I can say. We're on autopilot.— Sandy Hess, Aunt of Jesse Hess
Listen to the sobering conversation on Afternoon Drive with John Maytham:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Aunt of slain student Jesse Hess confirms murder suspect is close family member