• November 19th, 2019

Defence asks for acquittal in bar murder trial



WINDHOEK - Defence lawyer Trevor Brockerhoff yesterday asked Windhoek High Court Judge Naomi Shivute to acquit his client Sakarias (Sacky) Mathias, 58, on all charges when he made mitigatory submissions on the verdict to be delivered on his client facing a raft of charges.

Mathias is charged with murder, attempted murder, arms and ammunitions charges and a charge of defeating or obstructing or attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice relating to the shooting incident on April 9, 2014.

It is alleged he murdered 21-year-old Magdalena Fredricks when he shot her allegedly at point blank range at BSK Bar at Katutura Central Shops in a fit of jealousy.

He also faces a charge of attempted murder for allegedly firing shots at Patrick Hawala with the intent to murder him, and hitting him in the thigh. 

Alternatively, he allegedly wrongfully and unlawfully handled or discharged a firearm and did thereby negligently injure and endanger the life of Hawala. 

With regard to the arms and ammunition charges, it is charged by the state that Mathias unlawfully and negligently pointed a firearm at David Neingo as well as one count of possession of a firearm [without] a licence and a count of possessing ammunition without a licence. 

Mathias further faces one count of defeating or obstructing or attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice for, in an unknown manner, disposing off the firearm thereby frustrating police investigations and prosecution in identifying the origin and owner of the firearm. 

According to the indictment, the deceased was at BSK Bar in the company of Hawala and Neingo when Mathias arrived and fired shots indiscriminately at the entrance of the bar and then aimed the firearm at the deceased and shot her in her abdomen. 

He then turned the firearm at Hawala and fired several shots at the fleeing Hawala and shot him in the thigh. 

He allegedly also pointed the firearm at Neingo who managed to run away unscathed, the indictment read. 

The accused then left the scene and the deceased was taken to hospital where she died hours later due to the gun shot injury sustained, the court heard. 

Brockerhoff however told the court that the deceased was shot when Hawala who earlier robbed the accused of money pulled her in front of him at the moment Mathias fired a shot at his leg.
“Was it not for the intervention of Hawala, the deceased would not have been hit,” he told the court and continued that the conduct of Hawala when he pulled the deceased in front of him constituted an intervening act that led to the end result.

According to Brockerhoff, his client could not have foreseen that Hawala would pull the deceased in front of him and could thus not be found culpable for her death.

He further told the court he shot at Hawala because his life was in imminent danger as Hawala pulled a knife on him and he fired the shot to ward off an attack by Hawala.

With regards to the arms and ammunition charges Brockerhoff said the evidence show that Mathias picked the gun from the ground where one of his assailants dropped it and he did not have the intention to appropriate the firearm and that he threw it away as soon as he left the bar after the incident.

He further said that the charge of attempting to defeat the course of justice cannot stand, as Mathias had no intention to frustrate the police investigation, but merely wanted to get rid of the firearm when he tossed it.

State Advocate Palmer Khumalo who prosecuted the matter asked the court to find Mathias guilty on all charges and said the state proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Mathias had the required intention to kill the deceased and attempted to kill Hawala when he fired the shots into the bar.
Judge Shivute reserved her judgment and said she will deliver the verdict on October 16, at 09h00. Mathias is free on bail.


Roland Routh
2019-09-05 07:13:29 | 2 months ago

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