Ex-Blue Bull was planning to be Jesus Christ

2012-02-01 18:11
Durban - Former Blue Bulls flanker Phindile Ntshongwana was admitted to hospital after he showed symptoms of psychotic paranoia, religious delusion, and aggression, the KwaZulu-Natal High Court heard on Wednesday.

Ntshongwana's mother, Phyllian Letlaka, told the court her son's first contact with mental health services was on December 15 2009, when he was admitted to Durban's RK Khan Hospital.

"He presented symptoms of psychotic paranoia; religious delusions; aggressive behaviour; manic, pressured speech; irritable mood; and low self-esteem," Letlaka said, reading from a report.

The court is trying to determine whether Ntshongwana, who was in court, is fit to stand trial after allegedly killing four people with an axe in Durban last year. He also faces charges of attempted murder, one of kidnapping, and one of rape.

Letlaka said that on July 6 2010, Ntshongwana had relapsed and was re-admitted to RK Khan Hospital.

"He displayed symptoms of manic psychotic [sic] and he was argumentative," she said.

Records from Chief Albert Luthuli Hospital state that when Ntshongwana was admitted he was in an acute confused state with possible hallucinations. He was crying and repeating that he saw his late stepfather.

On Tuesday, the court heard that Ntshongwana was diagnosed with schizophrenia and a bipolar condition in December 2009, at RK Khan Hospital.

Ntshongwana's defence attorney, Sanusha Harripersad, submitted records from RK Khan, Chief Albert Luthuli, and Valkenberg Psychiatric hospitals.

The report from Cape Town's Valkenberg Psychiatric Hospital stated that Ntshongwana's insight into his diagnosis of mental illness appeared limited and he was unable to appreciate the full impact of his condition.

Kept a woman locked in his room

State Advocate Rea Mina asked Letlaka if she was aware that her son kept a woman locked in his room for a few days.

Letlaka told the court that she had seen and spoken to a woman who had visited her son. She said that when she had asked police if she could see the woman to determine if it was the same woman her son had allegedly raped, the police refused.

She said she spoke to the woman when her son was in his room and she did not show any signs that she was kidnapped.

When asked if she had noticed changes in her son's behaviour, Letlaka said no. She was always working and her son was always locked in his room.

Letlaka told the court there were two incidents where her son displayed aggressive behaviour before he was diagnosed with mental illness.

In one incident, Ntshongwana confronted his mother after she had told him to keep the newspapers in a visible spot in the house after reading them.

"He walked up the stairs towards me as if he wanted to attack me."

Letlaka said that after Ntshongwana was arrested in April last year, he told the police he was planning to be Jesus Christ.

When Ntshongwana was taken to Westville Prison, he refused to bath, eat, and change his clothes. His mother said he did not recognise her and his father on their first visit.

"He lost his speech, was making strange sounds, moving up and down. He looked absent-minded," Letlaka said.

She said her son's condition had improved with the help of the medication.

The matter was adjourned to February 24 for further investigation.
Read more on:    phindile ntshongwana  |  durban

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