Emotional testimony in Rehoboth murder case

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Maria Amakali

Windhoek-The man accused of bashing to death his live-in lover in Rehoboth in 2012 came face-to-face for the first time with one of the deceased’s daughters in the Windhoek High Court last week.

Fifty-one-year-old Paulus Ruben had to face Magritha Beukes’ emotional daughter, Elsime, when she took the stand to testify against him.

The prosecution is charging Ruben with one count of murder, read with the Combating of Domestic Violence Act, in connection with the death of 41-year-old Beukes, who was found dead on her bed at her home in Bahnhoff at Rehoboth.

Beukes recalled that their deceased mother’s behaviour towards them started to change gradually after she and the accused started dating and the accused had moved into their family home.

“One day our mother informed us that we had to leave, as the accused (Ruben) was not happy that we were staying with them,” narrated a very emotional Beukes, who had to be comforted during testimony.

After a short recess, Beukes continued, stating that their mother had no choice, as Ruben was the sole breadwinner of the family at the time.

For the four years he had been in prison, Ruben failed to show remorse for what he had done, as he never even bothered to tender his condolences to the bereaved family, Beukes testified.

Based on the post-mortem report, Magritha Beukes died from what is called sub-arachnoid haemorrhage (an uncommon type of stroke caused by bleeding on the surface of the brain), caused by a blunt force trauma.

The State alleges that Ruben killed the woman, based on the evidence of various witnesses, who all claimed to have seen the accused at the house of the deceased shortly before she was killed. It is further alleged that the accused ran away after killing the woman.

Ruben was arrested a few days later at a farm near Rehoboth, but has refuted the charges and pleaded not guilty, claiming he left Beukes alive when he left to go job-hunting the day before, January 3, 2012.
The case continues.

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