Ex-cop’s attitude to women one of ‘utter disrespect’

2015-06-03 10:51
(File, Shutterstock)

(File, Shutterstock)

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HIGH Court Judge Mohini Moodley found that former Durban policeman Selby Hlongwa (43) deserved more than the minimum prescribed sentence for murdering his girlfriend.

She sentenced him to 18 years’ imprisonment for shooting Princess Bhombubhomu Ngcobo outside Steers in Florida Road on January 15, 2012 — three years higher than the minimum for unpremeditated murder.

The court found Hlongwa shot Ngcobo in a rage.

Moodley however said that as a policeman with training in the use of firearms, he must have appreciated that shooting Ngcobo pointblank through the middle of her forehead would cause immediate death.

His actions thereafter were to create a scenario of a “wild shootout” (by firing randomly in the air) to deflect attention away from himself.

She said Ngcobo, eager to go home after a long night shift, was unarmed and defenceless.

Hlongwa was angered because he expected her to succumb to his insistence that she should go with him, even though she had to move out of his house because he had paid lobola for someone else.

Moodley said it was obvious Hlongwa had multiple relationships with other women. This was given that he is the father of nine children aged from 25 to seven years old.

Yet he expected Ngcobo to accept his advances and remain with him. When she tried to salvage her self-respect and assert her independence, she was shot.

She said Hlongwa’s attitude towards Ngcobo in particular, and women in general, was one of “utter disrespect”.

The judge said this was evidenced by the fact that he is HIV-positive yet has so many children — an indication that he did not wear condoms.

“In my view, one’s culture is no excuse for treating women like chattels or possessions,” she added.

Moodley said South Africa currently has one of the highest rates of gender-based violence in the world, despite laws like the Domestic Violence Act of 1998 in an effort to curb violence against women.

Moodley said she also agreed with state advocate Happy Mazibuko that it was startling that members of the ­police force regularly turn on their ­partners and shoot them with their ­service firearms, yet they were also tasked to support victims of domestic abuse.

Moodley also took into account that Hlongwa did not express any remorse or apologise to Ngcobo’s family ­although her mother was in court and her pain and distress were evident

Read more on:    durban  |  murder case

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