Yadadri: With the arrest of 28-year old Marri Srinivasa Reddy who allegedly raped and killed three young girls in Hajipur village in Yadadri - Bhuvanagiri district, gory details emerged about the accused modus operandi which are sending chills down the spine.
The accused Srinivasa Reddy, a bachelor, worked as a lift mechanic in the nearby towns. An alcoholic, he also got into drug abuse. The villagers recall him as of having quiet demeanour and never mingled with anyone. During interrogation, he revealed that he had also become addicted to child pornography and had two mobiles with him, which the police recovered.
In April 2015, he had sexually assaulted and killed an 11-year-old school girl of a neighbouring village. Since there was no proper transportation to the villages from Hajipur Cross Roads, many would reach home hitchhiking. There was only one TSRTC bus that plied six times a day.
He would keep track of young girls who sought lifts like this. He offered lift to the 11-year old when she was on her way home after meeting her aunt. He knew that there were two empty wells in the area and took her there on some pretext. When the girl resisted his moves, he threw her in one of the wells, raped the unconscious and injured girl and strangled her to death. He then buried her along with her bag. The girl's parents had a filed a missing complaint but the police could make no headway and three years later the case was considered closed.
Later he also tried to rape a married woman in Mysireddipalli, but got away with it. After that Srinivasa Reddy was caught several times trying to sexually harass women. When he was caught once ,the irate villagers tied him to tree and thrashed him. After that, he was seen mostly at home or going out on work and returning late.
In 2016 Srinivasa Reddy moved to Kurnool for a brief period and worked as lift mechanic. There he was arrested and let out on bail for killing a sex worker over money issues. He had strangled and killed the woman and dumped her body in the overhead tank where he was staying and fled from Kurnool.
Srinivasa Reddy moved back to Hajipur and no one knew about the criminal case pending against him. He was also sacked from full-time work for misbehaving with a woman.
In March 2019 he used the same modus operandi of offering a lift to a 17- year old girl who was returning from college. He took her to the well, got down from bike, and said that he was in love with her. When he tried to touch her, the teen girl resisted and in the same manner he threw her in the well. He raped and killed her and packed her body and handbag in a gunny sack and buried her in a corner of the well.
When the girl's parents refrained from filing a police complaint thinking that she had eloped, he grew bolder under the assumption that he could get away with it again.
On April 22, he waylaid his fourth victim, a 10th grader who was coming home after school at Keesara. He had earlier kept track of the girl's movements and offered her a lift on his bike. Taking her to the same well where he had buried the degree student he got down on some pretext and tried to force himself on the girl. Resisting his moves the girl tried to run, but he caught her and threw her down the 50-feet well. He first strangled her and then raped the dead girl. Since he was already drunk, he planned to bury her the next day and left the body there.
But what gave him away was that, in his inebriated condition he left the girls school bag next to the well. The girl's parents had already filed a missing complaint. The irate villagers were angered at the negligent manner in which the police handled the case. By then they had already started searching for the girl and three days later they saw the school bag checked the well, only to find the girls bloated body there.
When they staged a protest and demanded a probe into the incident, Rachakonda CP Mahesh Bhagavath ordered for a Special Investigation Team (SIT) under the leadership of DCP Surender Reddy to investigate the case.
Based on their investigation and getting to know of Srinivasa Reddy's past criminal records, police caught him hiding in Raviryala village. During course of interrogation he revealed that he had killed all the three girls in the past. Police are also checking if it was only these three or were there any more who were killed. The skeletal remains of the first victim were sent for DNA testing.
As tension mounted with the protests demanding stringent punishment to the accused, additional police forces were rushed to the village. Collector Anita Ramchandran also visited the village and took stock of the situation.