Anika Smit murder accused visibly anxious after being sent for psychiatric evaluation

By Jana van der Merwe
25 October 2016

The young man who handed himself over to police after six years in connection with the murder, rape and dismemberment of teenager Anika Smit is on his way to Weskoppies Psychiatric Hospital.

The young man who handed himself over to police after six years in connection with the murder, rape and dismemberment of teenager Anika Smit appeared in the Pretoria North magistrate court on Tuesday.

His “bottom lip was trembling slightly” when he heard that he was on his way to Weskoppies Psychiatric Hospital.

Advocate Tania Carstens, for the state, confirmed that a bed in the hospital is now available for André “Smiley” Van Wyk (24). This follows an earlier court order that he go for psychiatric evaluation after telling the state doctor that he doesn’t remember what happened at Anika’s father’s house on 10 March 2010.

Magistrate Pierre Wessels on Tuesday insisted it would be in the best interest of the judicial process if Van Zylwas psychiatrically evaluated.

Van Zyl, neatly dressed in a grey suit and tie, was clean-shaven – unlike at his court appearance on 19 September.

He indicated in court that he understood what was going on. His parents were once again in the courtroom to support him.

“Smiley looks good, but he’s a bit emotional about what lies ahead,” his lawyer, Latham Dixon, told YOU after the proceedings.

Dixon recently visited his client in the cells but couldn’t be in court on Tuesday. His candidate attorney told him that Van Zyl's “bottom lip was trembling just slightly”.

For security reasons he’s been held in the hospital division of Kgosi Mampuru II prison until now.

He’ll be monitored in Weskoppies for 30 days to determine what his state of mind would have been during the murder and if he was able to distinguish between right and wrong.

Van Zyl, a former classmate of Anika’s at Gerrit Maritz High School, turned himself over to the police on 17 September and confessed to killing Anika.

An inquest into her murder began last year because there was not enough evidence to arrest anyone and put them on trial. In light of his arrest the judicial inquest process has been placed on hold.

On the day of her murder Anika was home from school with an ear infection.

According to the state doctor’s report, Van Zyl never finished his Grade 11 year. He understands the serious nature of the charges against him and acknowledges the repercussions of a possible guilty verdict, according to the report.

He can’t explain what happened during the incident and cannot describe things related to the incident. And he maintains he’s not experiencing hallucinations or delusions.

Once his psychological evaluation in Weskoppies is complete, his next court appearance is on 25 November. Latham says although the results of the evaluation would usually be made known on the court date following the monitoring period, it cannot be guaranteed.

Read more: 

Anika Smit: Murder-accused ‘Smiley’ to be sent to psychiatric hospital

‘He couldn’t have done it alone’: friends of Anika Smit murder suspect ‘shocked to the core’

Murder suspect in Anika Smit case named six years after Pretoria teen’s brutal killing

Extra sources: Beeld, SABC Nuus

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