Life sentence for girlfriend killer

2014-08-02 10:28
Jail bars. (File photo, AP)

Jail bars. (File photo, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pretoria - A Pretoria High Court judge on Friday quoted a Zulu woman's struggle song from the 1950s before sentencing a man to life imprisonment for murdering his girlfriend and unborn child.

"Pregnant women are revered and protected in our society. That protection extends to every woman, be she pregnant or not, be she young or old", Judge George Webster said before sentencing Tshepo Nkomo, aged 34, for the February 2013 murder of his girlfriend, Baleseng "Bali" Motshwane.

"Wathint' Abafazi, Wathint' Imbokodo [you strike the woman, you strike the rock].

"If the accused has never heard of it, he must try to remember it", Webster said.

Motshwane was eight months' pregnant with Nkomo's child when he stabbed her in the chest, leaving her to bleed to death after locking her up in her Brakpan apartment.

'God is great'

Her decomposing body was found days later with her stillborn child between her legs after her mother and employer became worried about her.

Nkomo worked as a production manager at a tyre manufacturer at the time.

He begged the court to impose a more lenient sentence because he was the sole supporter of his two young children with another woman.

Nkomo denied having anything to do with Motshwane's death but admitted withdrawing money from his dead lover's bank account and using some of it to buy spares for his car.

He was sentenced to an additional 25 years' imprisonment for robbing Motshwane of her bank card and twice withdrawing R3 000 from her account. All sentences would run concurrently with his life sentence.

Webster described the murder as brutal and Nkomo's conduct as brazen, despicable, and callous.

He said the fact that the baby had been expelled from the mother's body could in itself have constituted murder because it was a full-term baby.

He said the motive for the attack had not been disclosed to the court. One of the most probable reasons was that Nkomo wanted money from her.

Nkomo knew Motshwane's family needed money for her funeral, did not hand over her bank card, but instead withdrew money for a second time and then conveniently "lost" the card.

Nkomo had absolutely no feelings, either for his pregnant girlfriend or his unborn child, and the only fit sentence for him was life imprisonment, Webster added.

Motshwane's family and friends, many of them dressed in T-shirts with a picture of her face on it, cheered when Nkomo was sentenced.

"God is great. Hallelujah. Amen. Justice is served", some cried out.

Motshwane's mother Johanna and other family members expressed satisfaction that justice had been done.

Read more on:    pretoria  |  crime  |  domestic violence

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.