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Man gets life for raping disabled girl

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A psychologist also testified that it was difficult to communicate with the victim during the examination, as she was shy and tearful.

AN HIV positive man, Petrus Williams, was yesterday sentenced to life imprisonment by the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court for raping a disabled minor.

The incident happened in Ritchie in 2017 when the 50-year-old William raped the 12-year-old victim.

The court heard yesterday how the young victim had contracted sexually transmitted infections due to the rape.

Williams, who initially pleaded not guilty, will also have his details submitted to the National Register for Sex Offenders, which will prohibit him from working with children or the disabled in the future.

Williams has been in custody since his arrest in April 2017.

Passing down her sentence yesterday, Magistrate Memory Qomoyi said she based her judgment on the inhuman act by Williams, who was aware of his HIV positive status during the time of the rape.

Williams’ status was confirmed during the trial by Dr Japie Bosman, who diagnosed him in 2016.

At the time, Bosman revealed that Williams was suffering from venereal warts, resulting in him being encouraged to undergo HIV and Aids testing.

The court heard how the victim, who is mentally impaired, went through physical and psychological trauma during the medical examinations.

According to medical reports, there was no proof of brutality nor any injuries suffered due to violence at the time of the rape. However, it was revealed that the victim suffered from swollen and red private parts after the incident.

Her medical reports further described how difficult it was for medical personnel to examine her as she refused to be examined due to the pain.

A psychologist also testified that it was difficult to communicate with the victim during the examination, as she was shy and tearful.

In her judgment, Qomoyi pointed out that the victim had to be re-tested twice for HIV and the results emerged negative on both occasions.

She had, however, contracted sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and had to be treated.

The victim’s grandmother had also testified that the rape incident left the victim with sleepless nights, where she “tossed and turned”.

It further led to her resentfulness of and violence towards male persons.

Qomoyi elaborated that the treatment process that the victim had to go through continued to be a battle as the grandmother, who is the caregiver, had to accompany her between Ritchie and the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley.

Her health complications as a result of the infections meant she had to be taken to a private doctor where she was treated for genital warts, which had developed into a serious infection.

The doctor confirmed that she could not reject the assertion that the victim’s condition was due to the rape incident.

“Rape is a despicable deed, something no human should ever experience. Now it is worse because this is a minor. It does not have to be tolerated in society,” said Qomoyi

“You put the complainant at risk of contracting HIV and Aids, as well as infections,” emphasised Qomoyi.

She said that it was due to the intervention of the crime-fighting community group Operation Wanya Tsotsi (OPW) that the victim received justice and the required medical treatment.

She added that the sentence took into account the interests of the victim and society, as well as to be fair to the accused to the extent that it addresses the issue of rehabilitation and prevention.