He then dumped the four-month pregnant woman’s body near a cemetery in Durban.
Durban – Simiso Chonco says he did not plan to kill his four-months pregnant girlfriend.
But the State does not believe him and has rejected his guilty plea, in terms of which he says the murder of Sinethemba Ngubo was not premeditated.
Chonco on Tuesday pleaded guilty to Ngubo’s murder and dumping her body near a cemetery in Ntuzuma, north of Durban, with the hope that someone would find it.
The rejection of his plea by the State automatically changed the plea to not guilty, and Chonco stood trial on charges of murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances, rape and being in possession of Ngubo’s car.
He was arrested while in the process of removing Ngubo’s body from the cemetery with the intention of placing it in her home and setting it on fire, and before he could sell her car to get rid of the evidence.
According to the State’s case, Chonco raped Ngubo, who was pregnant with his child, before killing her on December 9, 2018.
Senior State advocate Noxolo Dube told the Durban High Court that the murder was premeditated.
In his statement, Chonco said he and Ngubo were in a relationship from 2014 and lived together and were deeply in love until the relationship soured in 2016 and they parted ways.
He said he then moved back home and resumed a relationship with the mother of his four-year-old child, Nondumiso Nzama, but Ngubo would not accept that their relationship was over.
On December 9, he was with Nzama at his home when Ngubo arrived and knocked.
They did not open and Ngubo then broke the window, which prompted him to go out and investigate.
He said an argument broke out between them and he ended up leaving with Ngubo in her car, with the intention of taking her home.
“On the way she was shouting at me, telling me that she knows that I was with her (Nzama) and that was the reason I did not want her to enter, saying I was making her a fool. She slapped me across the face. I continued driving. I realised that we might get injured. I pulled over on the side of the road and I alighted from the car.”
He said they started pushing and shoving each other, and the slapping continued from both sides.
“I realised that I was not able to calm her down. I think I struck her twice on her face with my fist, and I grabbed her with both my hands on her neck and struggled with her. We both rolled several times. I did not let go.
“I noticed that she was not breathing. I called her name a few times, but she did not respond. I placed her in the back seat of the car and drove off. I realised that she was dead and I panicked more. I decided to dump her body near a bridge before going home to inform Nzama.”
Nzama, who testified for the State, told the court she could not believe it when Chonco returned about 40 minutes later and told her he had killed Ngubo.
“He returned and told me that he had killed Sne. He said he left her body by the bridge. I could not believe what he told me because he was not showing any remorse,” she said.
Nzama said she asked him to show her where he had left the body.
“We proceeded to a place known as KwaSheleni, where he showed me the body next to the bridge. I noticed that she was half-naked, with no shoes on. She wore the same clothes she wore when I saw her minutes before at the house.
“We then went back to the house and I asked him to take me and our child home,” she said.
The trial continues.