No bail for murder accused

2012-07-18 00:00

A PIETERMARITZBURG magistrate has refused to release a man charged with the murder of a 51-year-old widow at her home as the state fears for the safety of witnesses in the case.

Skhumbuzo Enock Mkhize (32) is facing charges of murder and robbery relating to the death of Vinotha Ince on April 25.

Ince was found dead at her home in Egret Road, Mount View, by contractors who were due to carry out renovations at her home, the court was told by the state.

She was stabbed several times in the chest and face while in bed. Her body was found slumped against a wall in the doorway of her bedroom.

Her cellphone and bag were reportedly missing.

The magistrate said since Mkhize had attacked a defenceless woman who was alone, he may also attack his girlfriend to try and interfere with the state’s case.

According to the evidence led during the bail application, he was arrested at the home of his girlfriend, Thobeka Kunene (21), and had spent two previous nights there.

Kunene’s statement to the police led Mkhize to show the police where Ince’s cellphone was.

Magistrate Reard Abrahams said that Kunene is a crucial witness in the case. “She is not just the girlfriend, but they have two children. If released, he could influence his girlfriend not to testify, or he could just threaten her.”

Mkhize wept, bending down and shaking his head while his mother also began crying in the public gallery and was moved out of the court by relatives.

Ince’s sister, Radha Pillay, who was in court during the proceedings, was “happy that he will be in custody”.

“Everything will be determined by the investigation. We will wait for the DNA test results,” said Pillay.

Mkhize will be back in court on August 24 when the results from DNA tests on his and Ince’s blood samples will be presented.


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