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Guilty of killing #heroboy

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Relief filled the Northern Cape High Court after the man accused of brutally killing six-year-old Kutlwano Garesape, who was trying to protect his mother from being raped, was found guilty.

Kutlwano Garesape, 6, died a hero after he tried to defend his mother who was being attacked by a man who wanted to rape her. Picture: Supplied

RELIEF filled the Northern Cape High Court after the man accused of brutally killing six-year-old Kutlwano Garesape, who was trying to protect his mother from being raped, was found guilty.

Tefelo Dikole was on Friday convicted of the murder of Kutlwano and the attempted rape of the young boy’s mother, Evelyn Garesape.

Tefelo Dikole attacked and tried to rape Garesape while she was walking with her two sons to school in Proefplaas, Jan Kempdorp on August 12, 2016. Kutlwano tried to protect his mother and Dikole stabbed him to death with a broken bottle at the railway line near Tau Diarora School.

The post-mortem report stated that Kutlwano suffered multiple blunt trauma and sharp trauma injuries, which included disembowelment, injuries to his kidneys, injuries to the diaphragm and exposed organs. The cause of death was a stab wound to the abdomen.

Acting Judge Vuma, before she handed down her judgment, said that Garesape had to fight to stop Dikole from raping her.

“Evelyn Garesape testified that she knew the accused and had seen the accused three times prior to the attack on her and her children. Her one son stood and watched the scuffle but the deceased intervened by kicking the accused and telling him to leave his mother.

“Garesape said that she never let go of the accused’s hand which held the broken bottle as she knew he would hurt her. At some point during the scuffle, she lost her balance and she fell to the ground. The accused fell on her but she managed to push him off. The accused, however, charged at her while she was sitting on her bum. She again pulled the his arm that held the bottle and did not let go.

“The accused then pulled up her skirt and she at that point knew that the intention of the accused was to rape her.

“She again managed to push him off and managed to run away with her other son. After realising that she was escaping, the accused turned on Kutlwano.”

Vuma pointed out that the mother had to witness the brutal manner in which her son was killed.

“The accused held the deceased by the shoulders and dropped him hard to the ground. He again picked up the deceased and again dropped him to the ground. The complainant (Garesape) was about 11 metres away from the accused and threw stones at him in an attempt to get him to let go of her son.

“While the child was on the ground, the accused put his hands around the neck of the child. The child raised both his hands into the air and kicked both his feet as he was being strangled by the accused. The mother then saw the accused use the broken bottle to stab her child.”

Vuma said that although the defence’s argument was that Dikole was the victim of mistaken identity, there was overwhelming evidence before the court to state that the accused was the person who killed Kutlwano.

“The mother of the deceased testified that she knew the accused as she had seen him before on different occasions. She sent her other son to go and get help during the attack. Mister Radebe and his workers, Stuurman and Moeng, came to the aid of the mother and her children.

“The scuffle between the accused and the complainant lasted for about 30 minutes and visibility was clear as the incident occurred after 8am in the morning. That would be sufficient time for the complainant to identify her attacker.

“When the workers arrived at the scene, they saw the accused in a bent position carrying the child and they shouted at him. The accused ran away. Stuurman testified that they chased him to Proefplaas and never took their eyes off the accused. He said that he did not see the accused’s face from the front while the chase was ongoing but only after the accused emerged from a house in Proefplaas with a sharpened iron bar.

“Moeng also did not lose sight of the accused and positively identified him during an identity parade.

“The accused elected to remain silent and did not tender any evidence or testimony from his side to oppose the State’s version.

“I cannot arrive at another conclusion other than that it was the accused who attacked the Garesape family on that day. The evidence also showed that it could only be the accused at the scene of the incident,” said Vuma.

She added that Dikole’s attorney’s argument that the accused had pulled the complainant’s skirt in attempt to free himself from her grip, was not logical.

“If the accused indeed tried to free himself from the complainant, the most logical thing to do would have been to push the complainant away on her chest. I cannot arrive at any other reason than that the probability was to rape her. The accused pulled up the complainant in an attempt to undress and rape her.”

Vuma said that Dikole had direct intent to kill Kutlwano.

“The way the accused held the deceased by the shoulders the first time, tossing a six-year-old in the air twice and dropping him hard to the ground and thereafter stabbing him with a sharpened bottle in the abdomen, showed that the accused had direct intent to kill the deceased.

“The attack on the deceased prior to the stabbing was vicious enough to cause death if one takes into account the age of the child,” said Vuma.

The matter was postponed to June for sentencing.