Mariental resident Abraham Jantze was on Monday convicted of murder for the fatal stabbing of his girlfriend, Magdalena Sussana Kooper, on December 08, 2012. The incident took place at Ombili location in Mariental district.
Handing down the sentence was High Court Judge Alfred Siboleka, who further convicted Jantze of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm for stabbing the sister of the deceased, Katrina Kooper, with a knife, causing some minor wounds.
He was however acquitted on a further charge of assault by threat for allegedly threatening to stab Hendrik Uirab, who tried to come to the aid of the deceased. But he was convicted on another charge of assault by threat for threatening to stab Willem Queen while wielding an open knife.
Judge Siboleka found that the State had proved Jantze stabbed the deceased twice, once in the left shoulder and then again once in her back after chasing her around with the knife held high in his hand.
He rubbished the accused’s version that he stabbed the deceased in the left shoulder when he found her in bed with her ex-boyfriend and father of her nine-month old son, Gavin Wimmerth, the morning of the incident.
He said while Jantze indicated in his pre-trial reply that he denied stabbing the deceased ‘because she was stabbed by Wimmerth’, he discarded this defence during the main trial and instead came out with different stories about what happened.
“It is my considered view that it is very difficult to assemble a reasonable lie about an event that has unfolded in the eyes of several onlookers in the broad daylight of the morning, before the worst alcohol lovers have even found it prudent to spoil their abilities of observation,” Judge Siboleka asserted and continued that he was satisfied that the accused’s version of what happened that day was not only a lie, but false beyond reasonable doubt.
He said he had no reason to fault the credible evidence of the prosecution witnesses who saw the accused running back into his house and come out with a knife with which he stabbed the deceased in the left shoulder.
According to the judge, the same witnesses testified how the accused chased the deceased around the yards of the neighbours to inflict the second stab wound in her back.
Both Katrina Kooper and Wimmerth testified how the accused was angry about the visit of Wimmerth to his house and that he repeatedly asked the deceased and Wimmerth whether there was still something between them, which both denied.
They said he became angry and started to assault the deceased and when they managed to separate him from the deceased, he ran inside the house and came out with a jagged-edged breadknife and stabbed the deceased.
The doctor who performed the autopsy testified that the deceased suffered a deep penetrating stab injury of about four by one centimetre long and six by five centimetre deep on the left shoulder, and another quite deep stab wound in her back which penetrated the internal chest cavity.
He concluded that the first stab injury was most likely the cause of death, while the second stab wound caused severe blood loss and also caused the collapse of the left lung.
The trial continues next week when defence lawyer Milton Engelbrecht will try to convince the judge to show leniency to his client, and State Advocate Cliff Lutibezi will do his utmost to persuade the judge in the opposite direction.