Estate agent walks free after car allegedly crashed into brothers

2015-05-19 08:26
Rina Bekker (Netwerk24)

Rina Bekker (Netwerk24)

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Pretoria - An estate agent whose car allegedly hit two teenage brothers in Centurion in 2011, killing one of them, has been acquitted on a charge of manslaughter.

Netwerk24 reported on Tuesday that Michael and Albert Lenting were aged 16 and 15 respectively when they were walking on the pavement outside Unitas hospital in Centurion. A vehicle ploughed over the pavement and crashed into the hospital's palisade fence.

Albert was pinned under the vehicle and seriously injured and Michael died of his injuries about a week later.

Only one witness saw Rina Bekker driving the vehicle. Domestic worker Olga Monama testified that she saw the brothers walking on the pavement that day, and then saw the vehicle hit them. She had to jump out of the way.  

She also testified that the driver was talking on her cellphone at the time.

Monama said she waited for a long time for the police to arrive at the scene to take a statement, but then left.

A lawyer representing the Lenting family testified that his law firm traced Monama and took a statement from her. This resulted in a trial-within-a-trial, as the firm is also involved in a civil case and a claim against the Road Accident Fund.

Magistrate Bheki Ntshingila found there were differences between Monama's testimony in court and the statement she gave to the law firm.

The State's other witnesses did not actually see the accident, and could not identify the accused as the person driving the car, the magistrate said.

Ntshingila granted the defence's application for Bekker to be discharged, and she was acquitted.

Read more on:    pretoria  |  accidents

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