Paarl man found guilty of raping, killing 10-year-old girl

2016-12-01 20:05
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Cape Town – The Western Cape High Court on Thursday found a man guilty of kidnapping, raping and killing 10-year-old Shamonique Claasen.

Judge Robert Henney said Jerome Amerika, 23, was a poor witness and his version of what had happened in Paarl in February was highly improbable.

Amerika had dated Claasen’s older sister Henriette. They had a child together.

The court also found him guilty of dragging Henriette into the bushes, hitting her with a stick and raping her twice in April last year.

She obtained an interdict against him, but the two later made up and lived together.

At the start of his trial, the baby-faced Amerika pleaded not guilty to all the charges.

On Thursday, he stared straight ahead or down at his lap as judgment was passed.

Shamonique went missing on February 27, a day before her 11th birthday.

Her mother reported her disappearance at the Paarl East police station, after police and relatives failed to find her during a search.

A family member "picked up a smell" in their home the next day.

Her body was rolled in a blanket tied up with wire under his bed. She had a black bag over her head and a stab wound to the chest.

According to pathologists, she was alive at the time of the rapes.

Sentencing proceedings start on Monday.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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