Ex-cop faces life for killing

The Citizen (KZN) - - Front Page - Ber­nadette Wicks

A Soweto woman, and for­mer po­lice of­fi­cer, could face life in prison af­ter be­ing found guilty of killing her 8-year-old son and try­ing to kill her 14-year-old daugh­ter.

Sen­tenc­ing pro­ceed­ings got un­der way in the High Court in Johannesbu­rg on Fri­day – just days ahead of the two-year an­niver­sary of the crimes in ques­tion.

On the morn­ing of 28 Jan­uary 2018, and in the wake of her hus­band’s death, the woman poi­soned her chil­dren’s break­fast.

A while later, when the poi­son ap­peared not to be work­ing, she shot them both in their stom­achs. Medics man­aged to save the girl but the boy died.

His cause of death was de­ter­mined to have been “acute my­ocar­dial in­farc­tion and cere­bral oedema, fol­low­ing al­leged organophos­phate poi­son­ing and su­per­fi­cial per­fo­rat­ing gun­shot wound of the ab­domen”.

Put sim­ply, he died of heart fail­ure and swelling to his brain.

The state is seek­ing the min­i­mum pre­scribed sen­tence for pre­med­i­tated mur­der, which is life im­pris­on­ment.

Pro­ceed­ings were on Fri­day post­poned though, af­ter the de­fence ob­jected to a vic­tim im­pact state­ment, de­posed to by the woman’s daugh­ter, be­ing handed up.

The girl is now ex­pected to be called to court and the case is sched­uled to come back be­fore a judge in March. Un­til then, the woman re­mains in cus­tody.

The 41-year-old woman was at one stage an SAPS re­servist. In 2018, when the crimes took place, she was a mem­ber of the Johannesbu­rg Metro Po­lice De­part­ment. She has, how­ever, since been dis­missed.

She can­not be named be­cause it would iden­tify her sur­viv­ing child and the Con­sti­tu­tional Court last month con­firmed the Supreme Court of Ap­peal’s rul­ing that child vic­tims of crime can­not be named.

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