A former Namibian Defence Force (NDF) paramedic who is accused of gunning down his ex-girlfriend and mother of his three-year-old is scheduled to stand trial in June.
Johannes Neuaka (39) is set to be tried on three charges, namely murder read with the provisions of the Domestic Violence Act, possession of a firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition.
Neuaka was informed that his trial would begin on 9 June when he made an appearance in the High Court last week before Judge Naomi Shivute for a pre-trial conference of case management review.
The father of 11 has been in police custody since handing himself over to the police after he allegedly shot his former girlfriend and mother to his child, Juliet Shane Rittmann (25) on 21 January 2018.
Rittmann died from a gunshot to the head allegedly fired by Neuaka with a 9mm Makarov pistol while at her mother’s home in Michael Angelo Street in Damara location, Katutura.
The former soldier denied any wrongdoing when he took a no guilty plea to the charges earlier this year.
During the bail application, Neuaka told the court that the deceased, Rittmann, was shot accidentally when she grabbed the arm he was holding the firearm with.
He testified that on the day in question he picked up the firearm while he was waiting for a friend to take him to the deceased’s mother’s residence to drop off his child.
After he dropped off the child, Neuaka said, the deceased wanted to see the pistol and as he lifted it in a 90-degree angle to make it safe, she suddenly pulled his arm down and a shot went off striking her in the face.
He further said that he did not have the intention to kill the deceased and that he left the scene because he was shocked and confused, and it was only later that he calmed down and decided to hand himself over to the police.
It is alleged that at the time of the incident the two had just ended their 5-year relationship. According to police reports at the time, it was suspected that Neuaka killed Rittmann due to unknown relationship problems.
After having been denied bail in the lower court Neuaka approached the High Court to appeal. However, the High Court refused to set aside the decision of the lower court. He has been in custody since.
For his trial Neuaka will be represented by defence lawyer Mbanga Siyomuinji.