17 Feb 2016 17:00pm
WINDHOEK, 17 FEB (NAMPA) The pointing out of a crime scene to the police will now be used against an illiterate farmworker charged with causing the death of his common-law wife, Dina Eises in the Gobabis area in November 2012.
The self-incriminating evidence, in which murder accused Paulus Shilongo pointed out the scene of the crime to the police shortly after his arrest, was ruled admissible in a judgement handed down by acting High Court Judge Dinah Usiku at the end of a trial-within-a-trial hearing here on Wednesday.
Ruling in favour of the State in respect of the admissibility of the disputed evidence, the acting High Court Judge said Shilongo was in a sober state of mind when the police took him to the crime scene for the pointing out of evidence.
His fundamental constitutional rights to a legal representative were fully explained to him in English and Otjiherero before pointing out the crime scene to the police. When photos of the crime scene were taken by the police investigating officers, the accused person did not raise any complaints.
The accused proceeded to do the pointing out of the crime scene freely and voluntarily. The police investigating officers did not force him to do it, as he is now claiming before court, acting Judge Usiku said.
This is a heavy blow to the illiterate farmworker, as the evidence will now be used against him during the hearing of his murder trial.
At the start of the trial two weeks ago, 32-year-old Shilongo admitted to beating and causing the death of his common-law wife Eises, but vehemently denied that he intended to kill her or foresaw that his actions could kill her.
As a result of this, a plea of not guilty was entered.
Shilongo's government-funded defence lawyer, Trevor Brockerhoff wanted his client to plead guilty to the lesser charge of culpable homicide, but State representative, Henry Muhongo, refused to accept such a plea.
Shilongo's trial only started after the court entered a not guilty plea and trial commenced.
Accused Shilongo and deceased Eises were in a domestic relationship at the time of the incident.
According to evidence of a summary of facts contained in the charge sheet, Shilongo allegedly assaulted Eises by pushing, kicking, slapping and hitting her while also tearing off her clothes and throwing stones at her head. He allegedly also hit her with a plastic pipe on the night of 08 November 2012 at Farm Tredgold in the Gobabis District.
It is alleged he dragged the deceased to their shack, situated at a cattle post on neighbouring Farm Geluk, where the assault continued into the early morning hours of 08 November 2012.
Eises died as a result of head injuries, after which Shilongo covered her body with a blanket inside the shack before locking the structure from the outside with a chain and padlock, and fleeing the scene, the State alleges.
Shilongo remains in police custody at the Windhoek Correctional Facility with no option to post bail.
The hearing continues on Thursday.