A family of eight killed a 16-year-old girl in Bantaeng, South Sulawesi, police say, after the girl allegedly brought dishonor to the family by getting intimate with a man out of wedlock.
According to local police, on Saturday, a 50-year-old man identified by his initials DA stabbed his 16-year-old daughter, RO, to her death. Those present during the killing, some of whom are believed to have also been directly involved, were DA's wife, his four children, and two in-laws.
Furthermore, DA reportedly held three neighbors hostage in his house amid the violent frenzy. They were freed with minor injuries after police were alerted and raided the house.
Reports first emerged that the family was driven to commit the crimes because they were possessed by malevolent spirits. However, police said that RO's death was an honor killing.
"The suspects were ashamed that the victim had gotten intimate out of wedlock with a man. So the suspects tortured the victim until her death," Bantaeng Police Chief Wawan Sumantri told Kompas today.
Police have yet to announce charges against the eight suspects. In Indonesia, premeditated murder is punishable by life imprisonment or the death penalty.
Though Indonesia still arguably clings to many patriarchal values, honor killings are extremely rare, making this case especially shocking.