History of abusive marriage surfaces in missing mum saga

Ravi Chetty

“He is a coward for doing what he did. He didn’t confess and took the coward’s way out leaving three young children without a mother or a father,” said the mum, who lives in Northdale, Pietermaritzburg.
“Even though my instinct as a mother told me that something terrible had happened to my daughter, I always hoped she would return. We now know that she won’t but we don’t know what happened to her. How do we ever find closure if we don’t find her?” asked Molly.
In the wake of Chetty’s suicide, details are beginning to emerge, from friends and family, that he was prone to violence and had abused his common-law wife for many years.
“He was very abusive to Venessa. She would always be fleeing to her family but he would lure her back promising to change. It was as if he was bipolar or had a split personality. He could be charming in one minute and the next he could be completely different,” said a relative of his who did not wish to be named.
The latest developments have added to the Pillay family’s trauma. Shortly after she went missing in July this year the family received several anonymous text messages purportedly sent by her asking that they “give her space”.
In August they received another text message that stated “I will come back when I am ready. Tell ‘Ma’ I am sorry”. However, after police released a missing person’s report that was published by the media, the family received a third text message, again purportedly from Venessa expressing anger that the report appeared in the media
“It just didn’t seem right. The tone and words used led us to believe that it wasn’t Venessa who sent the text messages. Why would she abandon three beautiful young children…it just didn’t make sense,” said a close friend of the missing woman.
“Why would he have killed himself if he was not guilty?” asked Molly.

  AUTHOR
Byrone Athman
Journalist

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