Relatives of a suspected murderer have fled after villagers set alight properties belonging to them at Zaaiplaas near Groblersdal.
"Residents burned all houses of the suspect's parents [on Thursday] night forcing the family to vacate the village because of this," said police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe.
Police warned residents against taking the law into their own hands.
Cases of arson and public violence were opened.
No arrests were made.
The murder suspect Lolo Madonsela, 30, appeared at the Groblersdal Magistrate's Court on Thursday on a charge of murder.
He was kept in custody.
Madonsela is expected back in court next week.
He is accused of killing his neighbour Anna Mashifane, 39.
It is alleged that last Tuesday a passer-by came across him busy chopping at her with a sharp instrument.
He later allegedly started sucking blood from her body at Zaaiplaas New Stands outside Groblesdal.
Police arrested the suspect at the scene with an axe in his hands.
Investigations are continuing.