A 42-year-old man was arrested by the APMC police on Thursday for allegedly raping, murdering and dumping the body of a five-year-old girl in Kopri village, Vashi.
The accused, Arun Pawar, allegedly raped the child for several hours before killing her, police said. He then cleaned the house he had taken her to, took a bath and also washed the victim's body to destroy, sources said.
"Pawar lived in the same area as the victim. As he worked as an estate agent, he had keys to several empty houses," said D Bhong, senior inspector, APMC police station,
"He has been married for 18 years, but the couple doesn't have any children," Bhong added.
Pawar reportedly told the police that he had visited the victim's house a few times to carry out some electrical work. "Hence the girl knew him," said Bhong, adding that a few residents had seen the child with Pawar around 12.30pm on Tuesday.
According to sources, the accused took the girl to an empty flat in a building and raped her. He allegedly had unnatural sex with her.
The post-mortem report said Pawar killed her between 4.30pm and 5pm by smothering her with his hand. As the search for the girl intensified, Pawar panicked and dumped her naked body outside her house at 1.30am. He removed her clothes to destroy evidence, the police said.
The forensic team found nail marks on his chest and lower back. The team also found traces of the victim's DNA on a broom and a cloth in the house.