Road rage accused granted bail

Johannesburg - A man accused of shooting dead a motorcyclist during a road rage confrontation was granted R5 000 bail in the Roodepoort Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Magistrate Denise Smith said murder accused Meekahefele Masooa, 43, presented compelling personal facts and circumstances that warranted that he be released on bail.

"The evidence before the court indicates this is a road rage incident. The accused did not flee the scene but waited for the police to arrive," she said.

The court would still have to test Masooa's facts, she said.

She said Masooa handed his and the deceased's firearm to the police at the scene.

Masooa told the court through an affidavit read by his lawyer that he is married and has four daughters.

The family lives in Centurion and owns a R2.2m house. Masooa, on whom the family depends, is a labour law consultant, the court heard.

Confrontation

He said the deceased, motorcyclist Douglas Pearce, confronted him on the day of the incident.

"He shouted at me, pointed the middle finger at me...I don't know why he did that."

The biker then stopped and pointed a firearm at him.

Masooa said he realised the danger he was in and pulled his gun to defend himself.

"I had no intention to kill him. I realise the seriousness of the offence, but I acted with [within] legal boundaries."

Masooa sat in the dock, dressed in a black suit as he listened to his lawyer, Victor Nkwashu, read his affidavit.

Nkwashu said his client's behaviour at the scene was an indication that he would not flee and avoid standing trial.

Abrasions

He told the court that Masooa suffered a gunshot to the head, but Smith said a medical report before the court did not indicate any gunshot wounds, but only abrasions.

Masooa was previously arrested for pointing a gun at someone, but was never convicted, said prosecutor Sam Campher.

The State had opposed bail due to the seriousness of the offence.

Masooa said he would plead not guilty.

Pearce, 39, was shot dead in the apparent road rage confrontation on Malibongwe Drive on Friday.

The two allegedly got into an argument, pulled off the road and continued their confrontation during which Masooa was injured and the biker shot dead.

The matter was postponed to 25 April.

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