Mom fed her children Rattex-laced porridge

2015-06-26 11:11
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Pietermaritzburg - A young woman from the Tamboville area who is charged with trying to poison her two young children by feeding them porridge laced with Rattex, is seeking bail in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court.

The alleged poisoning took place on June 16.

The woman, Slindile Mtolo, 20, said in an affidavit on Thursday that she intends to plead guilty to the charges that she attempted to murder her two children, aged 4-months-old and 2-years-old.

However, she said she supports the children, both boys, on a child grant, which she will not be able to receive if she is in prison.

According to the affidavit of the investigating officer in the case Warrant Officer Alvin Freddy, Mtolo had a change of heart after the children became ill and started vomiting.

She reported what happened to a neighbour and then called the police and handed herself over.

However, Freddy is opposing her release on bail on the grounds that he is concerned that she may not stand trial if she is released.

He added that her children are currently being cared for by their grandmother, but said Mtolo resides in the same area. “The safety of the two children is of concern if the accused is released on bail,” he said.

It was possible that if she were granted bail, Mtolo could intimidate the children’s grandmother and might also harm the children again, he said.

Freddy said his investigations revealed that the incident arose as Mtolo had a problem with the father of the children, who did not want to support them financially.

She had tried to get help from a relevant non-governmental organisation, but when she failed, she had bought Rattex, mixed the poison into porridge and poisoned her children.

“When they started vomiting she reported it to a neighbour. She then called the police and handed herself over, “he said.

Freddy said Mtolo has admitted that she mixed Rattex with the porridge and fed it to the children.

He said the community in which Mtolo lives is outraged by her actions and if she were to be released on bail he could not guarantee her safety.

Mtolo, who is represented by legal aid lawyer Jay Sundar, submitted that she is not a flight risk and has strong ties to the local community. Mtolo said she lives with her grandmother and can afford to pay bail of R500.

Whilst stating that she intends pleading guilty to the charges, Mtolo said she needs to support her children and if she remains in jail she will not be able to receive her child grant.

The bail application will continue on July 1.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  poisoning
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