State to try again in bid for Linda Barron case review

2008-06-17 00:00

An application requesting the high court to review and set aside the acquittal of Pietermaritzburg personality Linda Barron, who was charged for drunk driving and culpable homicide, was yesterday struck off the roll on technical legal grounds.

Judges Thumba Pillay and David Ntshangase agreed with submissions by Barron’s advocate, Shane Matthews, that the state provided inadequate information in its founding papers. The court ordered the state to pay Barron’s legal costs.

Despite the setback, state advocate Dorian Paver indicated to the court that the state will “go back to the drawing board” and file a fresh application.

It is likely to be months before the case is enrolled again in the high court.

Barron was found not guilty by Pietermaritzburg magistrate Dieter Schultz on all charges on December 15, 2006.

The charges — culpable homicide, driving under the influence of alcohol and failing to stop after an accident — arose from the death of musician Chas Smit (23) on September 18, 2005.

Smit was killed when Barron’s car struck him as he crossed Commercial Road (now Chief Albert Luthuli street) en route to Crowded House nightclub with friends at around midnight.

Barron, the principal of the Durban North campus of Varsity College (and former CEO of the Comrades Marathon Association), was returning from a Varsity College ball.

The state contends that Schultz’s judgment was flawed and resulted in an injustice.

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