Conflicting psych reports on Kotzé

2013-04-23 22:14
Johan Kotzé (Picture: Sapa)

Johan Kotzé (Picture: Sapa)

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Pretoria - Assertions that so-called "Modimolle Monster" Johan Kotzé was not accountable for his actions were contradicted on Tuesday.

Clinical psychologist Dirk Coetzee, who assessed Kotzé during his observation at Weskoppies Psychiatric Hospital in Pretoria, found he could be held criminally responsible for attacking his wife and killing her son in Modimolle on 3 January 2012.

The report on his assessment of Kotzé was handed into evidence in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday afternoon.

Another clinical psychologist, Tertia Spangenberg, came to different conclusions about Kotzé.

Spangenberg, who was called by Kotzé's defence, found he was not accountable for his actions.

She found Kotzé to have a narcissistic personality disorder.

"I am of the opinion that Mr Kotzé was not accountable for the alleged actions of which he stands accused," she said last week.

Kotzé is accused of orchestrating the gang-rape of Ina Bonnette and of murdering his stepson Conrad, 19, in his rented home in Modimolle.

At the time Bonnette was still married to Kotzé, but lived in her own flat.

Kotzé's co-accused, Andries Sithole, Pieta Mohlane, and Frans Mphaka are accused of kidnapping, assaulting, repeatedly raping, and attempting to murder Bonnette that day.

Spangenberg said individuals with his narcissistic disorder were noted for their egotistic self-involvement.

According to her findings, Kotzé was obsessed with 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 3 January 2012, Bonnette put a vibrator on the table of his Modimolle house and told Kotzé to use it on his next wife.

She told the court the parts of the attack Kotzé 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 Kotzé 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.

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In contrast, Coetzee's report stated Kotzé remembered the events well and he knew what he was doing was or could be wrong.

"At the time of the commission of the offence the accused was criminally responsible for the offence charged, and was capable of appreciating the wrongfulness of his act and could act in accordance with an appreciation of the wrongfulness of his act," Coetzee's report read.

Coetzee spent seven-and-a-half hours doing his assessment on Kotzé at Weskoppies. This was spread over five visits.

He described Kotzé as co-operative and attentive during interviews.

"He freely volunteered information." At times he became emotional and cried during his assessments.

Coetzee said he observed no behavioural or psychomotor (the relationship between cognitive functions and physical movement) abnormalities.

"His mood was euthymic [normal, reasonably positive] but he did express distress relating to his current situation."

Coetzee said Kotzé often said during the interviews that things could have been different had he talked about his feelings and taken up offers for help from friends.

During the interviews, Kotzé said his relationship with Bonnette deteriorated over time.

"The accused described his relationship with Mrs Ina Bonnette as characterised by frequent conflicts and verbal arguments."

Coetzee said Kotzé wanted to reconcile, but Bonnette did not. He found out about her relationship with another man when he followed her to a dance on New Years Eve 2011.

He said Kotzé gave a detailed account of the events of 3 January 2012.

Kotzé presented with a compulsive personality style.

"Although the accused does not have all the characteristics needed to establish a diagnosis of compulsive personality disorder, compulsive-like traits are definitely part of his personality structure.

"In addition the accused has some dependency needs that seem to drive many aspects of his behaviour.

At the time of the incident he did not suffer from any clinical psychiatric disorder."

Coetzee said Kotzé showed traits of a compulsive personality and some depressive symptoms had been reported.

Spangenberg's cross-examination would continue on Wednesday.

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