Teen killer of elderly man gets 15 years

2013-08-29 00:00

THE juvenile killer of 82-year-old Bulwer pensioner Michael John Povall has been sentenced to an effective 15 years’ imprisonment. Povall was stabbed to death and his body put in the boot of his car.

Imposing the sentence on the 17-year-old at the high court sitting at Madadeni this week, Judge Philip Nkosi told the youth that though he might have stabbed Povall to forestall resistance, he clearly saw that he would die.

He also found that the recent murder was premeditated.

The judge said while the youth did not explain his reasons, the crime appeared to be motivated by greed. Of the R13 000 in cash stolen, the accused had already spent R10 000 by the time he was arrested.

He told the youth it was not necessary for him to have killed Povall. “You could have threatened him into submission. You were very cruel with the knife. When you went there you knew that he stayed alone. He was described by the doctor as senile. He was defenceless,” said the judge.

Judge Nkosi said the killer hid the body and some days passed before Povall was found.

“Your actions are highly reprehensible and cannot be tolerated in civil society. You showed total disregard for human life,” the Judge told him.

The juvenile pleaded guilty to charges of murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

He admitted the state’s allegations that he had lured Povall out of his house by causing an object to fall to the ground.

When Povall came out to investigate the noise, he attacked him and stabbed him in his abdomen. He then put the body in the boot of his car.

After robbing him of a metal box containing R13 000 cash, a camera, personal documents, alcohol, a laptop and cellphone, he loaded the goods into Povall’s other vehicle — a VW Jetta — and fled the scene.

The court accepted that liquor might have played a role in his decision to rob Povall.

The court said that even though he was young, pleaded guilty, and was a first offender, no sentence other than a custodial sentence was appropriate in view of the abhorrent nature of his crimes.

He said it was hoped that the sentence would give the youngster an opportunity to be rehabilitated, improve his education in prison and “come out a better person”.

The court was told that though he was almost 18 years old, the youth was still doing Grade 7 at school because his family had moved constantly while his father was looking for employment.

Judge Nkosi sentenced him to 15 years’ imprisonment for murder and 10 years’ imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances but ordered the two terms to run concurrently.

Advocate Dorian Paver represented the state in the matter.

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