Man whose bite caused death acquitted

2012-01-17 10:36

Pretoria - A guesthouse owner was on Monday acquitted on a charge of murder after the bite he had given a security guard caused the guard’s death six days later.

A post mortem showed that Andrew Yusuf, 40, had died of “a human bite with complications and multiple organ failure” after the wound became septic.

Olushola Talabi, 42, was charged with murder for inflicting the bite, but the Pretoria Regional Court acquitted him.

Magistrate David Makhoba said: “Although a human bite can cause someone’s death, it depends on circumstances. There is no evidence that the accused knew his bite could lead to the deceased’s death, nor that he had intent to kill him.”

Talabi, manager and co-owner of a three-star guesthouse in Centurion, testified that he was waiting for German guests on November 14, 2010. When he walked into the guesthouse he saw rain leaking through the roof of the sitting room.


“I found the cleaner, Jean Mudavanhu, with her feet on the sofa, watching TV. When I asked her why she did not place a bucket under the leak, she said she wanted to finish watching the wrestling on TV,” he said.

Talabi fetched the bucket and called Mudavanhu’s boyfriend, Yusuf, to fetch her as the manager was considering disciplinary steps.

The cleaner allegedly told Yusuf, who was a head taller than Talabi, that Talabi had slapped her. The two men started arguing and Talabi walked outside.

“Yusuf followed me. He grabbed the weed eater and [tried to] hit me with it. He, however, hit a stone and the weed eater broke. “Then he jumped on me. I fell on my back with him on top of me. He strangled me with both hands.

“All I could do was to bite him on his hand. He did not release and I bit harder,” said Talabi.

After he managed to free himself, Talabi called the police to remove the couple.

Mudavanhu testified Yusuf’s hand was swollen in the morning. He went to hospital three days later, but died two days after that.

Advocate André Swanepoel argued for Talabi that Yusuf was the aggressor and the accused had defended himself.

  • Youefoh - 2012-01-17 10:44

    how the hell?

      rynhardt.ferreira - 2012-01-17 10:47

      LOL, this guy prob never brushes his teeth. Now you can tell all your kids that dirty teeth can kill!! :)

      Theresa - 2012-01-17 10:49

      He most probably got 'blood-poisoning' from the bite.It can be fatal.

      Jay - 2012-01-17 10:54

      A human bite is worse than a dog bite, we have more germs in our mouths.

      Nathan - 2012-01-17 11:36

      Brush your teeth folks!! :)

      Squeegee - 2012-01-17 14:05

      His bite was worse than his bark!

      richard.hipkin - 2012-01-17 14:20

      @Youefoh, easy, open your mouth and clamp down really hard. Only stop when you taste blood.

      Newsreader - 2012-01-17 18:00

      Yep...I punched an idiot in the mouth once and my hand swelled up like a balloon in a matter of hours.

      George - 2012-01-17 20:08

      Bit off more than he could chew

      GrootWitHaai - 2012-01-17 23:00

      Dayum! He could be South Africa's first real vampire.

      Boer - 2012-01-18 00:43

      This guy should go and bite Julius Malema he will do us all a favour.

      Merven - 2012-01-19 10:57

      His motto is probably: If I can't beat you, I'll bite you!

  • Peter - 2012-01-17 10:48

    Toothpaste ???????

      Squeegee - 2012-01-17 14:05

      Lack of...

  • Janice - 2012-01-17 10:48

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA sorry people, but this it just tooo funny.

      mike.bester1 - 2012-01-17 11:32

      HieHieHieHieHie Freekin Hilarious

      Schmee - 2012-01-17 12:36

      I'm glad there is someone else with a sick sense of humour. I started feeling bad because I was laughing so much.

  • Deon - 2012-01-17 10:49

    This is stranger than fiction.

      MoAfrika - 2012-01-17 11:22

      lol...u just made it worse, just for a leaking roof, funny very funny

  • alex.vorster1 - 2012-01-17 10:49

    munch munch...

      Zion - 2012-01-17 10:59

      munch, munch hand me another hand, munch.........

  • Charmain - 2012-01-17 10:50

    I hope I never have to go to that hospital

      donovan.botha - 2012-01-17 11:51

      this is the real issue the health care in south africa is the pits i lost my foot because of conditions in adington hospital and incompedent staff and doctors frikkin unreal is all i can say we despiratly need a revamp in our hospitals and health care hundreds of ppl are dying and nobody gives a dam if you look at the death toll on our roads it does not even come close to the amount of ppl that die everyday in our hospitals.sad but true.

      Lorenzo - 2012-01-17 15:26

      @ Donovan.botha You seem like a real barrel of laughs..

      George - 2012-01-17 20:09

      Hope I never stay at that guest house

  • jandreleroux - 2012-01-17 10:52

    I knew that a camels bite can be poisonous, but a Guest-house owner! Wow!

      keith.gough - 2012-01-17 11:23

      I have heard that guest house owners are far more lethal than ordinary home owners.

      Heinrich - 2012-01-17 14:07

      Guesthouse sign : "Come in for a bite". This is where " Don't worry about the dog. Beware of the owner" should be taken seriously.

      Chabi - 2012-01-17 17:37

      This is the new Legal Self Defence ... Bite to Kill !!

      Lana - 2012-01-19 09:46

      @ Chabi - that was the cherry! LMAO - Ohhh my tummy hurts from laughing so much....

  • elphaas.mgiba - 2012-01-17 10:55

    Teeth the new gun bite to kill, what a funny story the fact remain a soul past away and whoever bite him must be charge with murder!

      Ronald - 2012-01-17 12:56

      So, looking at your "logic", if Peter pees or defecates on the pavement next to the wall surrounding my house while being attacked by a robber and the robber slips on the it, knocks his head against the wall as he falls and then breaks his neck when his head hits the pavement and dies, then Peter is a murderer and so am I for building the wall as well as the stupid twit that built the pavement and the guy that discovered gravity. Wow, Nazo, you qualify for a PHD in Logic.

      Melissa Burton - 2012-01-17 14:41

      Since when is self-defence murder?! Oh wait, forgot, we're in South Africa. :-S

      Lorenzo - 2012-01-17 15:30

      Yeah Nazo ... the guy was attacked. The attacker was strangling him. WHich is attempted murder. therefore self defense. Im so biting a guy if im ever in a fight.

      Johnny - 2012-01-17 15:30

      Well Nazo - he bit the guy while being strangled ! Doesnt that sound like self defence? And also, pls read the article before commenting... he was charged with murder but accuited.

  • Lucky - 2012-01-17 10:55

    Teeth acquired a new use: lethal weapon. Good thing is: most people have it!

  • Ouie - 2012-01-17 10:56

    Another one "bites" the dust!!

      Morakane - 2012-01-17 19:37

      LOL I'm on the floor!

  • Lionel - 2012-01-17 10:58

    Dracular returns??????

      Naledi - 2012-01-17 23:43

      No venicular

  • Kolobe - 2012-01-17 11:01


  • Getafix - 2012-01-17 11:03

    Owe :P We have weapons people :P Go Zombie Apocalypse!!!!

  • Getafix - 2012-01-17 11:08

    The biter was defending himself, Lets go into his shoes. You on your back, guy is on top of you. He is strangling you, you bite him to make him let go. Its self defense. Why should he be charged with murder? Carbon dioxide that we all produce will all eventually kill us. Mabe we should all be on murder trial, We killing kids in 2035!!!

  • frans.grobler3 - 2012-01-17 11:12

    Dont bite the hand that feeds you!

      George - 2012-01-17 20:15

      Give him a finger and he takes your life

  • pokum - 2012-01-17 11:14

    wow, this dude must have not brushed his teeth much

  • ivan.coetzee2 - 2012-01-17 11:17

    His bite WAS worse than his bark! What a bizarre story WTF?!

      George - 2012-01-17 20:18

      The others only got a stone

  • Perfume5 - 2012-01-17 11:20


      Deon - 2012-01-17 13:54

      It sounds as if the boyfriend's immune system might have been depressed. You need to test yourself owner.

      George - 2012-01-17 20:11

      @ Perfume, yes, RIP

      Gerhard - 2012-01-17 20:31

      Poor infection control in hospital.

  • Mlungisi - 2012-01-17 11:24


  • smahlaba - 2012-01-17 11:26


      CarlS - 2012-01-17 12:13

      Yes - rather lie on your back and get strangled to death than fight back and bite your attacker. This goes DOUBLE for rape victims.

  • Xoli - 2012-01-17 11:26

    Ek gaan jou dood byt...LOl. I can just see the next time they search me HEY OPEN YOUR MOUTH...

      Garth - 2012-01-17 11:33

      get searched often then? Sure your name is not `skollie'?

      Xoli - 2012-01-17 11:43

      @Garth Its just one of those things you cant avoid when you stay in an area like mine..

      keith.gough - 2012-01-17 12:00

      You think we will not be allowed to fly with our lethal teeth?

      Garth - 2012-01-17 12:00

      How unfortunate. For the good of your sake, make sure that they wear gloves when they touch you . . .

      Xoli - 2012-01-17 12:06

      @Garth Ag cmon man dont go there @ Keith LOl..

      Merven - 2012-01-19 11:01

      @Xoli, but you're from Cape Town, changes are that you'll rather gum the guys to death!

  • MissGremlin - 2012-01-17 11:30

    can we teach rhino's to bite?

      Andries - 2012-01-17 11:40

      They are already biting the bullet.

  • Mphotent - 2012-01-17 11:35

    Yooh shocked...

  • Andries - 2012-01-17 11:36

    This was self defense, WHY WAS THE ATTACKER NOT ARRESTED AND CHARGED WITH ATTEMPTED MURDER? He was employed to protect the owner and his property but he attacked the owner. OK, it was a rhetorical question - I know the answer.

      Jan - 2012-01-17 15:32

      Andries no dont call the police their moto is if someone attacks you bite(shoot)to kill. Sympathy to the GH owner, giving his workers everything he can.

  • Phumi - 2012-01-17 11:42

    Again if our people had access to proper health care and justice this death could have been avoided and he could have been here to tell his side of the story. This should remind us of the challanges still facing our people who are marginalised and voiceless in the land of plenty.

      ivan.coetzee2 - 2012-01-17 11:54

      You are such a CHOP!! Wheres the relevance in your comments? Get off your soap box or take it to another forum.

      Garth - 2012-01-17 12:01

      `Trolling, trolling, trolling, keep 'em comments flowing, every bodies reading, this site.' : sung to the tune of `Rawhide'.

      donovan.botha - 2012-01-17 12:07

      Phumi it is sad but true that the ppl of south africa put this government into power that are full of emty promises and it only us south africans that can take them out of power they have fooled oround enough have lined there pockets with our hard erned cash instead of puting it to good use like our health care facilities so we can only blame our selves.

      madsipho - 2012-01-17 12:47

      Phumi, please raise these stupid question when you in ANCYL meeting, but not here man...You sounds more stupid!

      Deon - 2012-01-17 13:57

      The state can not look after everyone, save some money for emergencies.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-01-17 14:17

      @Phumi.... hahahahahaha!! I hope you get paid to be this funny..

      Cina - 2012-01-17 14:36

      So tell your government to build more hospitals and get better hospital staff than having R100m parties, but its lekkerder to have a booze up, than thinking of there people.

      raegan.mcreed - 2012-01-17 17:29

      PHUMI, stop playing with madam's computer !!! the clothes are waiting to be ironed.....

  • TenRas1 - 2012-01-17 11:44

    Dude u must have ur teeth checked or else u will kill a lot of people....Woman must stay away from u lol

  • TheWatcher - 2012-01-17 11:45

    I hope that cleaner was fired as well. Her laziness and lies are what started this whole thing.

      Garth - 2012-01-17 12:02

      In a perfect world Watcher, in a perfect world.

  • Nduna - 2012-01-17 11:49

    Jokes aside. Please be aware that, medically, a human bite is more dangerous than that of a dog. If someone bites you, even if without bad intentions, seek medical help immediately. Such cases have been reported before.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-01-17 15:51

      We tend to think it can't be dangerous because it is a human and you could have kiss that mouth without getting infected.(in my case if it was a I wonder if the guy was not allergic to something he was treated with and he and no-one was knowing it. Penicillin comes to mind.

  • dave.j.colquhoun - 2012-01-17 11:49

    I find this very amusing. However the consequences are reall worrying Consider this. When you decide to fly to your holiday next time, some security guard could ban you from the flight because you have all your teeth. How about removing the teeth of all those people aprehended for committing crimes. After all, isn't it illegal to carry lethal weapons around in prison. Whatever next?

  • Gavin - 2012-01-17 11:55

    It's the things we can't see with our eyes that are more deadly than the man with gun...

  • Ashley - 2012-01-17 11:56

    he probably had rabies!

  • senseofeuphoria - 2012-01-17 12:08

    Eish ..WTF

  • errol.wagner - 2012-01-17 12:08

    He should join the dog squad for the Police services.

  • Sanet Oelofse - 2012-01-17 12:11

    Komodo dragon...

  • CarlS - 2012-01-17 12:12

    Hope the twilight fans don't catch wind of this.

      Perfume5 - 2012-01-17 12:37

      Or Vampire Diaries lol!!!

  • Dave - 2012-01-17 12:25

    His bite is worse than his bark

  • TheSlip - 2012-01-17 12:25

    Vernacular (Venaculah?): ARgggghhhh! I'm going to bite youuuuuu! Victim: Yooohhhhh...don't bite meeeee!

      Simone - 2012-01-17 13:55

      i tried not laughing as someone lost their life but hell this cracked me up hahahahaha

      wende.davids - 2012-01-17 14:38

      Hahaha... A trevor noah fan I see... nice.

  • Tshivhombela Fhatuwani - 2012-01-17 12:34

    This komodo dragon belongs in zoo. Joke aside, a human bite is much more dangerous. Just a small bite can inflict a lot of and the wound can be very gangrenous. I know it, i was once bitten by my cousin while fighting and I couldn't walk after two days.

      coetzee - 2012-01-17 14:14

      Did he bite your balls?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-01-17 14:19

      @coetzee, why would you like to look at them?

      Tshivhombela Fhatuwani - 2012-01-17 15:12

      @ Coetzee, My calf.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-01-17 15:56

      @Tshivhombela. You should have answered Coetzee by saying that you did not said you could not walk at your cousins funeral. Well, that is what I believe what would have happened if my cousin bites me there.LOL.

      Lana - 2012-01-19 09:57

      Ohhh Gods, I thought I could not laugh more than I already have...this is truly tragic, but the poor man's death gave other's food for the soul...LAUGHTER!

  • madsipho - 2012-01-17 12:50

    No more love bites for me....that will lead to no kissing at all.

  • danigirl27 - 2012-01-17 13:27

    That is so strange! Who would have thought...

  • Ncele - 2012-01-17 14:08

    a ladys bungee cord snapped and she survived, a hiker fell from a cliff and survived, jed fell base jumping and he lives. all this happened because they where all airlifted to hospital. so the hand guy should have being airlifted.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-01-17 15:58

      He was airlifted a few days after the incident and treatment.

  • Munchk1n - 2012-01-17 14:08

    Talk about Jungle Justice. And the maid is probably also without a job too.

  • Cina - 2012-01-17 14:25

    This is a case of his bite is worse than his bark.

  • Trevor - 2012-01-17 14:49

    And here i thought a "Black Mamba'...was the deadlest??? (sorry for the pun)

  • Clinton - 2012-01-17 14:59

    Thats one deadly bite

  • Sav.Demetriou - 2012-01-17 15:28

    Journalism at its finest. Jerry! Jerry! Jerry!

  • Buti - 2012-01-17 16:16

    who caused him to die? they must sentence him to snake park not in jail.

  • binarycape - 2012-01-17 16:50

    I was once bitten by a dog and took myself off to the doctor for an anti-tetanus injection. The doctor told me that it was highly unlikely, unless a dog had rabies, that a dog bite would get infected and that I was lucky I was not bitten by a human, because human bites usually end up infected. He said that even when we brush our teeth regularly humans have some serious germs in our mouths as opposed to dogs.

  • jurie.grobler - 2012-01-17 17:06

    Bite on hand leading to SIRS and MODS(systemic inflammatory response and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome)=AIDS!

  • raegan.mcreed - 2012-01-17 17:26