The trial of Karl Friedrich Eichhoff, an Okahandja resident accused of killing a man and burying him in a burrow alongside two dogs on his father’s farm in 2013, will be heard in August.
Windhoek Regional Court magistrate Leopold Hangalo said the court was unable to start trial, as it was dealing with partly heard matters.
Eichhoff’s trial will start afresh after the presiding magistrate who initially heard his matter left the service of the Judiciary.
Thus, the court postponed the matter to 9 August, extending Eichhoff’s N$30 000 bail.
Eichhoff is accused of shooting and killing Cornelius Slinger (51) on 6 October 2013. He then attempted to conceal his crime by burying the body alongside two dogs he had shot, in warthog burrows.
The incident took place on Eichhoff father’s farm in areas of Okahandja.
Thus, the prosecution has decided to have him stand trial on a count of murder, defeating or obstructing the course of justice, or attempting to do so, and ill-treatment of animals – charges he denied.
At the start of his trial in June 2017, Eichhoff pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and ill-treatment of animals, but admitted guilt on a count of attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice.
In his plea explanation, he told the court he did not see any human being when he fired shots at four dogs that were on the farm.
But he admitted that one of the shots he fired might have struck Slinger and caused his death.
He explained that on the day in question, he was at the water point on the farm when he heard dogs barking. He allegedly started walking in their direction to see what was going on as they had had issues with poaching on the farm.
He approached a busy area and came across four dogs and he started shooting at them. As a result of the shooting, he killed two dogs. After he got closer to the dogs, he allegedly saw a man lying dead under a bush.
Due to fear and panic, he decided to bury Slinger alongside the dead dogs in warthog burrows. Slinger’s body was discovered two days later after a search carried out by the police and residents from a neighbouring resettlement farm where Slinger lived.
Eichhoff confessed and was arrested. He showed police where he had buried Slinger.
According to the post-mortem report, Slinger died from blood loss caused by a gunshot wound. The fatal bullet struck him on his right leg, just below the buttock, went through the leg, nearly destroyed his private parts, and entered his left leg.
The report indicated Slinger was walking or running when he got shot.