Shooter did not act in self-defence – judge 

Home Crime and Courts Shooter did not act in self-defence – judge 

WINDHOEK – Windhoek High Court Judge Naomi Shivute this week said that Sakarias (Sacky) Mathias, 59, did not act in self-defence when he fired a shot that fatally wounded a 21-year-old girl at a bar in Katutura when she delivered her judgment.

“I am satisfied that the defence of private defence is an afterthought on the part of the accused,” the judge said when she convicted Mathias on charges of murder, attempted murder, arms and ammunitions and a charge of defeating or obstructing or attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice relating to the shooting incident on 9 April 2014.

She, however, acquitted him on a charge of pointing of a firearm.
Mathias was accused of murdering Magdalena Fredricks when he shot her allegedly at point blank range at BSK Bar at Katutura Central Shops in a fit of jealousy.

He denied this at the start of his trial and told the court the deceased was accidentally shot when he fired at Patrick Hawala who had robbed him earlier of his money.
He claimed that Hawala pulled the deceased in front of him and used her as a human shield at the same time he fired the shot.

Judge Shivute rejected this version as false.
According to her, the accused’s own evidence was that Hawala was holding a knife on one hand while with his other hand he grabbed the deceased and lifted her up.

The judge further said that according to the post mortem report, the deceased weighed 69kg, therefore, it was not possible for Hawala to lift up the deceased with one hand.
“The court had the benefit of observing Hawala in court, Hawala is not a heavy weight person,” the judge said.

She went on to say that Hawala also testified that it was not possible for him to lift up the deceased with one hand as one of his hands did not function properly.

Judge Shivute further said that she accepts Hawala’s version as the truth.
According to her, the accused came with a lethal weapon, uttered the words that he gave her money and now she was spending it on other guys and intentionally shot at the deceased and Hawala.
She went on to say that Mathias directed his shot at the deceased’s vital organs, namely the abdomen.
“He had a direct intent to kill the deceased,” the judge said.

With regards to the charge of attempted murder and the ammunition charges, the judge said she is satisfied beyond reason that Mathias intended to kill Hawala when he fired a shot at him and that he had the gun and ammunition unlawfully.

She also found that he is guilty on the charge of defeating the cause of justice because by disposing of the firearm, he made it impossible for the police to investigate the origin of the firearm.

The judge cancelled the bail of Mathias upon his conviction and he will be kept in custody at the Windhoek Correctional Facility’s section for trial awaiting inmates until he returns to court on 21 November for pre-sentencing procedures.   

Trevor Brockerhoff represents Mathias and State Advocate Palmer Khumalo is prosecuting.