'Calculating' man kills ex before testimony
Rowan Sewchurran, The Witness
Durban - Only a day before Catherine Krog would give evidence that her ex-husband was a dangerous man who previously pointed a gun at her, he killed her.
It was her greatest fear realised.
The dramatic tale of abduction and obsession and a short-lived reunion between the mother and her child Isabella came to a bloody end on Thursday when Clint Walley shot Krog and then turned the gun on himself.
Walley earlier this year abducted his daughter from Krog for what would be 11 of the longest days of the young mother’s life.
It is believed that Walley had gained access to the complex where she lived at Mount Edgecombe by scaling security walls with electric fencing.
On Facebook, Krog’s status reads that she was having a late night picnic on the bed with her daughter only four hours before the shots rang out.
Lieutenant Anton Booysen of the Hawks told The Witness that he was expecting to give evidence along with Krog at the Durban Regional Court on Friday in a bid to deny the father of any access to Isabella.
“The trial was in the process, and [Friday] would have been a significant hearing in that I was expected to give my evidence - which was damning,” he said.
But in the early hours of Thursday morning Walley entered the usually secure Kindlewood Estate armed with a 9mm pistol and carried out the execution-style killing before shooting himself through the mouth.
Police said Krog was staying with her cousin, who was in the house at the time of the shooting. He escaped unharmed with the child.
In a previous interview with The Witness, Krog described her ex-husband as “calculating and cruel”.
After Walley abducted her, Isabella was found in a safehouse in Kimberley. Krog revealed at the time that Walley taunted police with e-mails and SMSes that they would never see Isabella again.
In February Walley was denied bail in the Durban Magistrate’s Court.
Newspapers reported at the time that the court heard evidence that Walley was possibly a bigamist who had remained married to Melanie Forrester when he married Krog. She was more than 20 years younger than Walley.
Walley’s lawyer, Methmoud Peer, reportedly told the court that while Walley was in custody someone had petrol-bombed his home.
Walley was initially charged with kidnapping, but the charge was dropped because Isabella was his child. He was then charged with failure to comply with a high court order and remanded in custody. He subsequently reapplied for bail and was granted R2 000 bail.
A source said Walley had for the past two months been “squatting” between Durban and Pietermaritzburg, possibly because he was down and out.
Newspapers have reported that Charmaine Wheatley, Krog’s mother, applied to the courts to be given custody of the child, claiming that neither Krog nor Walley were fit parents.
Tributes meanwhile poured in on Facebook on an account dedicated to Isabella and her mother.
Sue Jones wrote, “To the family, I have no words to describe how you must feel. My heart goes out to you all and especially little Bella, who has already suffered a traumatic experience earlier in the year and now has to deal with an even more traumatic experience. May God give you all the strength you will need in this terribly sad time.”
Heather Wright Powell wrote, “So sad. the system fails once again. thoughts go out to all Cat’s close friends and family at this very difficult time. may those who are looking after Bella find the strength to care for this child who is so young yet has gone through a life time of pain!”
Melissa Pennells wrote: “I was awake at 1?am when I saw your post about having a picnic with Bella on your bed, it brought a huge smile to my face and actually made me want my little Jayden who was fast asleep next to me to wake up so we could do the same … I went back to bed with that memory in my mind only to wake up to this tragic news. RIP Cath, may you always be able to keep your protective hand on Bella from up above”.