Ro­hde daugh­ter’s change of heart

The Mercury - - METRO - African

CON­VICTED mur­derer Ja­son Ro­hde’s eldest daugh­ter, Katie, who was to tes­tify in mit­i­ga­tion of sen­tence at the High Court in Cape Town yes­ter­day, changed her mind just min­utes after she took to the wit­ness stand.

Katie had just been sworn in when de­fence ad­vo­cate Gra­ham van der Spuy asked to ad­dress the court and told the Western Cape High Court Judge Gayaat Salie-Hlophe that the wit­ness no longer wished to tes­tify.

This fol­lowed Judge Salie-Hlophe’s rul­ing that the me­dia could re­main in court and that only au­dio of Katie’s tes­ti­mony could be broad­cast.

Ac­cord­ing to Van der Spuy, the 20-year-old had agreed to tes­tify only with­out broad­cast as she was un­der a lot of “un­fair pres­sure”.

Ro­hde was con­victed by Judge Salie-Hlophe on Novem­ber 8 of the 2016 mur­der of his wife, Su­san.

He will re­main in cus­tody un­til his next ap­pear­ance on Fe­bru­ary 18, after the judge turned down Van der Spuy’s ap­pli­ca­tion for bail re­in­state­ment. The de­fence said it would call two friends and former col­leagues of Ro­hde to give ev­i­dence in mit­i­ga­tion of sen­tence at his next court ap­pear­ance. |

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