Saturday, July 13, 2024

High Court convicts man for murder of girlfriend

A jealous lover, who stabbed his girlfriend to death in Ramotswa, is facing a possible death penalty after he was convicted for the murder by the High Court this week.

Joseph Ditlhakeng is accused of killing her girlfriend, Mmabatho Segopolo, at Madisakwana Ward in Ramotswana in November 2010.

Passing judgment, High Court Judge Mercy Garekwe found Ditlhakeng, 30, guilty of murder.
Garekwe noted in her judgment that Ditlhakeng’s defense, relating to accident and provocation, was false. ┬á

She indicated that Ditlhakeng, in his testimony, contended that the stabbing was accidental because he was trying to scare away the deceased by scratching her.

According to the judge, Ditlhakeng maintained that he used a “Tile Cutter” to scratch the deceased who wanted to take his phone forcefully from him on their way from Ema Renwe Shebeen.

The judge said that Ditlhakeng could have known that using a “Tile Cutter” that he drew from his pocket to scratch human flesh could result in excessive bleeding, leading to death.

Garekwe further informed the court that Ditlhakeng’s action was calculated as it is evident that he used a Tile Cutter rather than using his bare hands to scare away Segopolo, who was drunk at the time.

The judge also contended that there was no reason for him to use dangerous weapons on an unarmed drunken woman, especially since Segopolo had no intention to harm him.

The Judge also noted that there was no mistake as Ditlhakeng claims in his defense, and said stated that it was a calculated move that was meant to injure the deceased.  

“It is a dangerous weapon by all standards. It is used for cutting hard objects, such as tiles, and it could not be used to cut human flesh. You could have anticipated causing serious injury to another person,” the Judge said, adding that Ditlhakeng’s argument that he committed the offense after┬ábeing threatened by Segopolo’s boyfriend was an afterthought.

Garekwe pointed out that the accused, who professed to love the deceased, even fled the scene of the incident after committing the attack.

She maintained that the issue of provocation and accident in Ditlhakeng’s defense could not lead to acquittal, adding that the murder was a calculated move with intent to harm the deceased.

The Judge revoked Ditlhakeng’s bail after she found him guilty and remanded him in custody.
The sentence has been slated for June 26.


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