Pregnant teen breaks down in cop shooting trial

2012-08-01 14:31
Thato Mokoka's mother and grandmother (File, Sapa)

Thato Mokoka's mother and grandmother (File, Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The friend of a Soweto teenager who was shot dead, allegedly by a student constable, broke down during cross-examination in the South Gauteng High Court on Wednesday.

The pregnant, 15-year-old girl appeared irritated as she was asked by advocate Kenneth Manyage to answer questions she said she had already answered on Monday.

Judge Kathleen Satchwell explained that the court was simply trying to find out what happened on February 14 when Thato Mokoka was shot dead, allegedly by student Constable Sipho Mbatha.

The girl, who may not be named, told the court she knew what she had seen.

"I saw that man, [referring to Mbatha] with his foot on Thato."

The witness stepped out of the box and demonstrated to the court the position she was in when she saw Mokoka on the ground.

On Tuesday, she testified that she was in Mokoka's shack talking to him, another boy and girl when police came looking for him.

"The police surrounded the shack and knocked roughly. They shone a light through the window... Then we heard them cocking their guns."

On Monday, Mbatha pleaded not guilty to the murder charge against him.

He claimed he was bending over to search Mokoka when his gun accidentally went off.

Testifying in camera on Tuesday, the girl told the court she did not see Mbatha searching Mokoka, but she did identify him as the person who shot Mokoka.

She also told the court she had made a vow to Mokoka to see justice done.

"I went to Thato [as he lay dead] and told him that those responsible for his murder would go to jail."

She is the second person to testify in the case. Mokoka's aunt Mpumi Mokoka testified on Monday.

The trial continues.
Read more on:    police  |  sipho mbatha  |  thato mokoka  |  johannesburg  |  soweto  |  police brutality

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