Cullinan child killer seeks forgiveness

2010-07-22 14:52

A self-confessed child rapist and murderer has told the High Court in Pretoria that he would “feel better” if his 11-year-old victim’s family forgave him.

“I am sorry but I cannot forgive him,” Rozan Jafta, mother of his young victim Jeanine Kayser, told the court in response.

Judge Peter Mabuse jailed Kalvin William Edwards (31), of Atteridgeville, for 39 years for raping and killing Jeanine at her family home in Onverwacht, near Cullinan, on October 4 2008.

Mabuse described the murder and rape as savage, saying it was clear from photos she had died a cruel death.

He accepted that Edwards, a first offender who pleaded guilty to both charges, had shown remorse following his public apology about what he did, and could be rehabilitated.

Edwards admitted he had been drinking the whole day with Jeanine’s stepfather, Jan Jafta, and had lured the little girl outside through her bedroom window after finding Jafta asleep on the couch.

Mrs Jafta was in hospital at the time and had left her children with her husband.

Edwards said he had taken the child to nearby bushes where he first raped and then strangled her. When he realised she was dead, he threw her body back onto the bed through the window.

He kept quiet about what he did for almost six months, until DNA evidence linked him to the crime.

Sisters suffered

Mrs Jafta testified she felt as if Edwards had killed her other two daughters as well, because both children had not been the same since Jeanine’s death.

Her middle daughter, who found Jeanine dead, had problems at school and became aggressive, while the youngest kept on asking when Jeanine was coming home.

Jafta was shocked when she found out Edwards was her daughter’s killer, as he had been with them every day.

He helped carry Jeanine’s coffin to her grave and had even warned her that the killer was still out there and was going to kill someone else.

“I ask the court not to give him a lenient sentence.

He has no remorse.

I almost destroyed my whole family.

“In fact he managed to do so because my two children were never the same thereafter, and I don’t think they will ever be the same again.”

Edwards testified in mitigation today that he was sorry about what he did and knew it was wrong.

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