Lungile Cele’s body was found on Sunday morning, Captain Thulani Zwane said.
She was walking home along a path on Saturday night when she was attacked and strangled.
KwaZulu-Natal community safety MEC Willies Mchunu said Cele, a Grade nine pupil at iMashiyamahle High School, was raped before she was killed.
“It is alleged that she was first raped, then killed because her body was found naked and her private parts full of blood,” he said in a statement.
Zwane could not confirm the rape and said a post mortem would be conducted.
Mchunu said Cele’s death was “totally abhorrent and it reflected the lowest decline in morals of our society”.
“I would like to urge the teachers and parents to also play a role in ensuring that our children are safe at all times,” said Mchunu.
No arrests had been made.