Kotze not accountable: expert

By Drum Digital
19 April 2013

So-called "Modimolle monster" Johan Kotze is not accountable for his actions, a clinical psychologist told the High Court in Pretoria on Friday.

"I am of the opinion that Mr Kotze was not accountable for the alleged actions of which he stands accused," Tertia Spangenberg said.

Kotze's defence counsel called Spangenberg as a witness.

"My opinion is based on a plea of non-pathological criminal incapacity," she said.

"It is my opinion that the combination of Mr Kotze's narcissistic personality disorder, superimposed on traumatic psychological injuries, combined with an unmanaged long-standing major depression and untreated and unresolved acute stress disorder, resulted in a state of psychological dissociation during his alleged criminal acts."

She said Kotze had a narcissistic personality disorder and was obsessed with his ex-wife Ina Bonnette. When he saw her with another man on New Year's Eve 2011 it caused trauma, which led to stress disorder.

He became dissociated when, during an argument on January 3, 2012, Bonnette put a vibrator on the table of his Modimolle house and told Kotze to use it on his next wife.

Spangenberg read her report on Kotze into the court record. She first assessed him in October 2012 at the Pretoria Maximum Prison. The interview lasted four hours.

"There was a sense of urgency on his side to convey his life story to me."

She told the court the parts of the attack Kotze said he forgot were consistent throughout her assessments.

"He was very frustrated about aspects of the incidents he could not remember."

Spangenberg told the court he could not relate to the fact that Conrad Bonnette was dead.

"I cannot kill Conrad," she quoted Kotze saying.

She said he never referred to Conrad's death in the past tense.

"I would never be able to kill Conrad. I cannot shoot Conrad."

She said this was consistent in every interview. Spangenberg said Kotze was born out of wedlock and adopted. His adoptive mother died shortly after.

His father remarried, but Kotze never felt his stepmother really accepted him. She said his stepsisters confirmed Kotze's need for approval and admiration in his younger days.

"This history is typical in the development of narcissistic personality disorder."

Kotze is accused of orchestrating the gang-rape of his former wife and murdering his stepson Conrad, 19, in his rented home in Modimolle on January 3, 2012. Bonnette was still married to Kotze, but she lived in her own flat at the time.

Andries Sithole, Pieta Mohlane, and Frans Mphaka are also accused of kidnapping, assaulting, repeatedly raping, and attempting to murder Bonnette that day.

Spangenberg said Kotze remembered cutting off Bonnette's nipple and that he stuck a needle into her breast. When he saw blood he came to his senses. Thereafter he felt confused again.

She said it was noteworthy that Kotze became more confused as the incident progressed.

"It is not uncommon that individuals, who commit violent acts, will often be severely traumatised by their own acts. In an already dissociated state, this trauma would cause further dissociation."

-Sapa

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