The trial of an Okahandja resident accused of killing a man and burying him with two dogs on his father’s farm seven years ago was postponed to September.
Appearing on bail, Karl Friedrich Eichhoff (37) presented himself before the Windhoek Regional Court where he was informed his case has not yet been allocated a presiding officer to take over from where magistrate Elina Nandago had left off. She left the service of the judiciary earlier this year.
Thus, magistrate Justine Asino postponed the matter to 25 September.
Eichhoff faces charges of murder, defeating or obstructing the course of justice, or attempting to do so, and ill-treatment of animals.
The charges emanate from the shooting that took place on Eichhoff father’s farm in Okahandja district on 6 October 2013.
The prosecution alleges he shot and killed Cornelius Slinger (51). He then attempted to conceal his crime by burying the body alongside two dogs he had shot, in warthog holes.
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 holes at the scene. 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.