Jail for man who shot wife suspended

2012-05-23 00:00

A PROVINCIAL traffic officer who shot and wounded his wife in 2010 during an argument was given a wholly suspended 10-year jail sentence yesterday coupled with a hefty compensation order.

Lebohang Justice Molefe (34) will also be placed under correctional supervision for three years and will not have access to a firearm in future.

The suspended sentence imposed by Judge Isaac Madondo is conditional on his paying his ex-wife, Londeka, a total of R60 000 towards her medical and counselling expenses.

The amount is payable in monthly instalments of R1 000 for the next five years.

Another condition imposed on him is that he must continue to undergo psychotherapy until he is cured or his medical practitioner considers he should be discharged from further attendance.

Molefe’s mother, Thembeleni, said afterwards she believed the sentence was fair. “My son did this thing and he must accept responsibility … He must carry the burden of his actions.”

Londeka Molefe did not attend the hearing yesterday, but testified the previous day that she could not forgive her ex-husband for shooting her twice in the face at close range on April 29, 2010.

Passing sentence, Judge Madondo said it was understandable that Londeka was still seething with anger and emotionally distraught when she testified in court on Monday as it was the first time she’d faced her former husband since the shooting.

It was also understandable that she at that point spurned the defence offer to compensate her for her medical and counselling costs.

He said the sentence he imposed should not be interpreted in any way as condoning the shooting.

He said that sending the accused to jail would serve only the retributive purpose of punishment.

A suspended sentence coupled with compensation, on the other hand, would afford “long-lasting protection” to the victim and her children and benefit them.

The judge said the events that led to the shooting were a history of confrontation as a result of the accused’s alleged infidelities.

On the day in question Molefe got information that the butchery the couple operated had been broken into and he was unable to find his wife.

He was therefore emotionally charged when she accused him of infidelity and he lost his temper.

He also said it was unlikely the offence could be repeated since the couple are divorced.

• ingrido@witness.co.za

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