Not a murderer, says alleged killer

2012-06-07 22:31
Albert van Vuuren has told the North Gauteng High Court he could not have killed his wife because "he would never do something like that".. (File, Beeld)

Albert van Vuuren has told the North Gauteng High Court he could not have killed his wife because "he would never do something like that".. (File, Beeld)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pretoria - He knew he could not have killed his wife because "he would never do something like that", a Bronkhorstspruit liquor shop manager told the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Thursday.

Albert van Vuuren testified in his own defence after Judge Elizabeth Kubushi turned down his application for a discharge.

She said there was enough evidence on which a reasonable person could convict Van Vuuren on a charge of murdering his wife Monica, on his family's farm near Bronkhorstspruit, two years ago.

A pathologist earlier testified that the frail looking Mrs Van Vuuren had been stabbed 25 times and had a broken neck and jaw.

Her death had been caused by a spinal injury and stab wounds to both sides of her chest, which penetrated her heart and caused her lungs to collapse.

Van Vuuren testified that he could not remember what had happened that fateful night, after drinking a sleeping pill with liquor.

He said he and his friend Gordon McCullum had been drinking brandy and watching DVDs since the afternoon while his wife had worked in the storeroom packing eggs for their business. She later came in to work in the kitchen.

"I went to the kitchen to ask my wife why she wanted my phone. She said she was looking for a number.

"I said 'oh' and turned around. The next thing I can remember is waking up in a police cell with cuts on my hand and head.

"It felt like I was in a dream, but it wasn't a dream. Others in the cell told me they were saying I had killed a woman," he said.

Van Vuuren testified that McCullum had visited him several times while he was in custody, and kept on telling him to remember that he had killed his wife, which he always denied.

"He put it as if he wanted me to admit that I had killed my wife, but I knew nothing about it.

"... I did not commit the murder. I know.

"If you kill someone you must surely remember it. I am not a murderer.

"I would not do something like that. I know myself. I was not even angry with my wife," he said.

He testified that he and his wife had marital problems in the last five years before her death and had stopped having sex, although they still slept in the same bed.

He said he did not want a divorce as he did not want to leave his wife destitute, and would actually have been thankful if she had an affair so that another man could look after her.

He testified that he was happy when he received a divorce letter from her, but did not agree with all of the demands she made in the letter, which would have given her everything and left him with nothing.

He claimed his wife had for some strange reason demanded that he should not discuss her divorce plans with his mother, even though she never liked his mother and used to badmouth her.

He testified at length about the mental health of McCullum, who suffered from bipolar disorder and was admitted twice to a mental institution while living with Van Vuuren and his wife.

According to Van Vuuren, McCullum used to drink a lot and he had seen him swallowing a handful of pills with his brandy that afternoon.

He denied McCullum's evidence that he had woken him in the middle of the night and confessed to killing his wife.

He also denied the evidence of a policewoman, who said Van Vuuren had told her he had killed his wife because she had tried to poison him and wanted to divorce him.

Van Vuuren said McCullum had become "paranoid" and had actually made the startling claim that Van Vuuren's wife was trying to poison him on the afternoon before the murder.

The trial continues.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Partner Content
Travel Dreams? Where would you rather be right now?

Partnered: Whether you're missing family overseas, dreaming of family adventures or romantic hideaways we all have that one place we'd rather be right now - but have you thought about the best way to get there?

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.