25 Feb 2016 17:10pm
WINDHOEK, 25 FEB (NAMPA) - Rehoboth resident Bryan Rickerts, who stabbed a shebeen owner to death at that town in the Hardap Region in 2014, was Thursday found guilty as charged in the High Court.
The 37-year-old Rickerts was found guilty by High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg of stabbing Shaun Roderick Beukes to death with a knife in Rehoboths Block E residential area on 07 February 2014.
This was a barbaric attack on the deceased person. Killing someone is a very serious offence and in my opinion, the prosecution team has proved its case beyond reasonable doubt that you (Bryan Rickerts) caused the death of an innocent man, said Liebenberg.
Meanwhile, Rickerts was found not guilty and acquitted in respect of a second count of obstructing the course of justice for allegedly hiding the two knives he used in the murder incident behind a corrugated iron shack dwelling, and having threatened to kill Helga Helen van Wyk and other State witnesses, Albertus Josef Sneiders and Brenda van Wyk.
Rickerts pleaded not guilty to all three counts at the start of the trial earlier this year.
He appeared in court Thursday with a protective mask over his mouth and nose in efforts to minimise the spread of TB (tuberculosis) to other people. He had been diagnosed and is receiving treatment at the Katutura State Hospital.
Government-sponsored lawyer Milton Engelbrecht appeared for Rickerts, while State Advocate Jack Eixab represented the prosecution.
On 09 February this year, Rickerts in a written statement handed in before court by his defence lawyer, said he could not recall any event before, during or after the alleged incident because he was completely inebriated.
Evidence presented during trial has it that Rickerts arrived at the Tina Lager shebeen armed with two knives on the day of the incident and found Beukes taking an afternoon nap.
Rickerts then proceeded to sharpen the two knives he had in his possession and when Beukes woke up, he (Rickerts) remarked that Beukes was one of those strong men and stabbed the deceased once in the chest, causing death due to an injury to the heart.
Rickerts then ran away but was later arrested.
Engelbrecht is defending Rickerts, acting on the instructions of the Justice Ministry's Directorate of Legal Aid.