Taxi driver Humphreys gets 20 years

2012-02-28 11:00

Cape Town - Minibus taxi driver Jacob Humphreys was handed down an effective 20-year jail sentence in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday.

Judge Robert Henney also cancelled his driver's licence with immediate effect.

The sentence drew a large gasp from friends and family in the gallery, with some bursting into tears.

Humphreys held a grave expression throughout the reading of the sentence, frowning deeply and pursing his lips.

He was convicted of murder, following an accident on August 25, 2010 in Cape Town. While taking children to school, he overtook a row of cars at the Buttskop level crossing in Blackheath, ignored safety signals and proceeded over the tracks.

A train hit the taxi, killing 10 of the children he was taking to school. Four others were seriously injured.

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  • Randomhero6661 - 2012-02-28 11:03

    bye boi and enjoooi!

      JohhnyBGood - 2012-02-28 11:15

      Justice, sortof. Still, we are 10 children missing because this moron behaved like an ape. Could've been so easily avoided. Wait your turn, that's all.

      Poloyatonki - 2012-02-28 11:19

      Only 20 years, I was hoping he will get 100 years...

      Anastasia - 2012-02-28 11:49

      Out of jail in 7 years. pretty damn shocking considering 10 children died and numerous families are changed forever.

      adrian.bruwer - 2012-02-28 12:23

      So each child's life is valued at 2 years in prison? That's shocking. This guy should be put away for 20 LIFE sentences!!

      melissa.jarvis2 - 2012-02-28 12:32

      He should have got 10 life sentences. reckless behavior that kills children is not acceptable. He should have got the death penalty, imagine how the victims family members feel.

      Patrick - 2012-02-28 13:20

      Do not fool yourselves, there are thousands of "humphreys" on our roads.

      Anastasia - 2012-02-28 13:56

      @ Janine, if I recall correctly, he has to serve 1/3rd of his sentence before he qualifies for parole - this is not a guarantee of release, there are several factors which are considered, remorse, input from the families etc. But after 7 years, he has a shot at getting out.

      Pierre - 2012-02-29 06:54

      This verdict is ludicrous. Yes we need to stamp out recklessness on the roads, but surely 20 years is excessive. All of you that approve this verdict; next time it might be you making a reckless accident; maybe speeding, in an accident just over the alcohol limit or do something stupid like a U-turn at an inappropriate place. Then you can get sentenced to 20 years!! Think about that. (Then I also don’t like murder charges being misused for incidents that are clearly culpable homicide.)

      Lanfear - 2012-02-29 13:15

      @ Pierre - you are the only one thinking rationally within the confines of the law. Thanks! The rest of the comments seem to come from rabid, foaming-at-the-mouth, idiots! The parents of the children themselves said they are satisfied with the sentence.

  • Bardy - 2012-02-28 11:03

    So that's 2 years per child? This is not justice!

      muriel.baron1 - 2012-02-28 11:08

      It's not fair!!! He supposed to get 25 yrsx10!!

      Karri - 2012-02-28 11:08

      An insult to the families but better than a slap on the wrist. Now - to all others who murder on the road through bad manners and selfishness - lets make this the norm! 20years!

      MastersVoice - 2012-02-28 11:16

      I could not agree more Bardy. Life is cheap here in SA, it would seem. Its no wonder communities are starting to take matters into their own hands.

      Warwick - 2012-02-28 15:11

      Might get sick like Shabby Shaik and Jackie boy Selebi and be out on medical parole in a few weeks. And driving his taxi to his hearts content.

  • Edward Serfontein - 2012-02-28 11:07

    You'd think that a driver who transports passangers would be the most safest driver on the road. Simply because, when you get behind that steering wheel, you take responsibility for the lives of every one in that vehicle. Isn't it ironic that taxi drivers are known as the most reckless drivers?

  • brionyl.french - 2012-02-28 11:07

    This isnt Justice at all... He should have gotten 10 life sentences... Im disgusted in this

      Poloyatonki - 2012-02-28 11:20

      I am with on this one, 20 years for killing ten kids thats shocking.

  • Shaun - 2012-02-28 11:08

    20 years is ridiculous, he will be out in 10 - should have got life with no possibility of parole Another case of no justice served in South Africa

      kgomotso.radise - 2012-02-28 11:15

      @Shaun very true Lets hope it will send a strong & good message out there to other taxi driver's who driver as if the road is only theirs

  • craigdavidfox - 2012-02-28 11:09

    Papa wag vir jou!

  • Peter - 2012-02-28 11:10

    Out in five years to drive like an idiot again, must have an ANC membership card.

      C'hle - 2012-02-28 16:25

      now u are sounding like an idiot this has nothing to do with the anc

  • boownz - 2012-02-28 11:10

    shoud be at least 20 years for each child...

  • jaz82 - 2012-02-28 11:11

    Damn Pathetic!

      Poloyatonki - 2012-02-28 11:21

      Mob justice is our last resort.

  • Jean - 2012-02-28 11:12

    took them long enough!!!

  • siya.jr - 2012-02-28 11:14


  • Wt - 2012-02-28 11:14

    If I made a racial remark, Id probably get 25!

  • clivelang1 - 2012-02-28 11:15

    Is that all? 20 years for killing 10 kids. He must know the judge. This is not justice at all. He will be out in 6 for good behaviour. Pathetic!!!!!

  • Leon - 2012-02-28 11:15

    He'll be out in 5 years on good behaviour or something

  • Duduzile Nkosi Sibeko - 2012-02-28 11:16

    20years is not enough but im satisfied that he will go to jail. Let this be a lesson to every driver out there that road signs are not there to decorate our roads but they are there to save lives.

  • qmglover - 2012-02-28 11:17

    WHAT!!!!!!!!!!this is pathetic....2 years per child and then he still get a chance of coming out early ...

  • Deon - 2012-02-28 11:18

    It is not so bad, he expected a suspended sentence.

  • Eric - 2012-02-28 11:19

    I find some of the comments quite amusing. So many judges that write on news 24.

  • PhilipV - 2012-02-28 11:19

    Should have been 20years per child, what a joke.

  • Thoka - 2012-02-28 11:21

    very shoking

  • stef.delport - 2012-02-28 11:21

    The police will still not do anything about the taxi's

  • Xoli - 2012-02-28 11:22

    "Pappa wag vir jou" Have a good time and tell Pappa I said he must enjoy...

  • Kenneth - 2012-02-28 11:24

    Justice my ARSE.Life sentance for every child minimum.Preferably, Death Penalty.What a load of crock.Since 1994 ,the justice system in this country is very slowly going down,down and well you get the picture.If we cannot even have justice for children in this country,then how in heavens name will we ever get criminals to think twice about doing crime and stop crime.What a joke.Now the taxpayer has to feed this prick and clothe him etc etc for 20 years maybe less due to good behaviour and Humphreys pledging his undying support to the Rot called ANC for a pardon who stuffed up the justice system in the first place and for what-so he can sit on his fat ass watching tv with his mates in there prison cell while 10 families grieve over their loss? Screw the judge for his verdict.How do you sleep at night Judge? Have you got children and if you do,how would you feel if this idiot did this to your child? Shame on you,you useless prick.You are a joke to the justice system.How much you being paid heh?Angry that all 10 children die and Humphreys gets only 20 years.He crossed a railway line without following safety rules.Cmon?

      Rob - 2012-02-28 11:31

      You know that he is almost 60 years old right? In 20 years he will be 80. If he lives that long

      Manugu Calvin - 2012-02-28 11:40

      lol every comment on 24 news its about, black and white,,, everything its draged to politics shame on you.

      Simon - 2012-02-28 11:43

      and he will become the next president when he`s 80 , what a load of crap. agree with 10 life sentences , at least , in saudi he would have been hanged in the street ,

      Rob - 2012-02-28 14:42

      @Simon - Yeah, nothing better than having dead bodies hanging around in the street. That'll be good great for our country... even better for our children when they go to school and see their classmates parents dead and on display. You thirst for blood overwhelms your need for reason.

  • elsabe.wessels1 - 2012-02-28 11:26

    So sad. The guilt he carries will be with him for the rest of his life, no matter how many years he serves in jail.

      Elizabeth - 2012-02-28 12:08

      What guilt - they don't know meaning or feeling ... only demand and its my right...

  • Rob - 2012-02-28 11:28

    Does he get his drivers license back once his sentence is served? i hope not

      Marion - 2012-02-28 12:21

      His license was cancelled. That means he will have to do another driving test when he gets out. Or he'll have to buy another license.

  • Mashudu - 2012-02-28 11:28

    Jub Jub You're next!

  • AGvanderWesthuizen - 2012-02-28 11:32

    Thank you.

  • Ragingbull1 - 2012-02-28 11:33

    There are so many who commit more haneous crimes that get away with it! 20 years is a long time. How many of you reading this have ever driven a car under the influence of al;cohol, MOST id think! Well, any 1 of you couldve been in exactly the same siatuation.....dont judge lest he be judged. im not undernining the death of the kids, but we have all been lucky, the bus driver was not.

      Marion - 2012-02-28 12:23

      There are way too many people on the road who drive under the influence of something. Just another one of the bad things this government has done is to charge such drivers with murder. Not.

      maureen.bryden - 2012-02-28 17:42

      @Ragingbull - I agree with you 100%. The bottom line it was an ACCIDENT!! He did not do it deliberately. He made a very bad error when judging the distance, he too could have been killed. He was NOT under influence of alcohol. He is a respected man in his community. Ja, I agree, he f**ked up badly, and sadly young lives were lost. But just how many THOUSANDS of kids are killed daily on our roads, if one can call them that. I am 100% in favour of harsh punishment, even the death penalty when necessary, but the act must be a DELIBERATE act, not an error of judgement or a momentary lapse in concentration. I am 72, & have to confess in my youth I occasionally drove under the influence, as most of us older folk have, there was no such thing as "drinking & driving" then. I have had a lapse & in error gone through a red light. To all you folk who mercilessly judge and condemn this man, just think of the guilt he has to carry the rest of his life. Think of his family. Are you all without flaws? Please, have a mite of compassion.

      Willa - 2012-02-29 11:52

      @Maureen: How is this an accident: "he overtook a row of cars at the Buttskop level crossing in Blackheath, ignored safety signals and proceeded over the tracks." Being in a daze and accidentally driving through a stop sign/red light or not seeing someone in your blind spot and changing lanes (thus hitting them cos you didn't check your blind spot) - that kind of thing is an "accident". Making the concious decision to overtake not just one but several cars when it is unsafe to do so, against traffic regulations and not checking for trains/stopping at the tracks is definitely NOT an accident. And I bet he did all of this in excess of the speed limit too. Why should he be getting special treatment? He knew what he was doing and the risks involved and clearly did not care. Just like thousands of other taxi drivers out there that think they can do and drive as they like cos they all live in a non consequential space. It is about time they got reeled in. He deserves every bit of that sentence.

  • Dennis - 2012-02-28 11:34

    Two years for each child killed - THAT IS NOT JUSICE !!!

  • Turboboost_111 - 2012-02-28 11:34

    Hopefull thingking that this outcome might set a president for all Taxi Drivers.. Tou kill people due to poor driving or reckless driving you will go to Jail for a long time!!

  • Stuka - 2012-02-28 11:38

    that's just 2 years per child...even if this murderer dies in jail of old age, he's still got something to count down on. He should have been sentenced to life with out the option of parole, he should not have the hope to out live that 20 years. Personaly I feel he should not be alive at all, but that's just me.

  • Michele - 2012-02-28 11:39

    Good. I hope other taxi drivers have taken note. There are going to be consequences for reckless driving going forward.

  • Brian M Sithole - 2012-02-28 11:40

    Eish ya...

  • maghdim - 2012-02-28 11:40

    Only 20 years!! And he will be back home in 6 years time!! This judgement sends a clear message to taxi drivers that they can continue to drive like idiots and will get away with it. The law is on their side!!

  • Bernard - 2012-02-28 11:43

    20 Years for 10 Lives, the justice system is a joke, Hang him now & save the tax payers a bundle of money. Scum Bag, hope you rot in your cell.

  • Samukelisiwe Tana Shelembe - 2012-02-28 11:47

    jah neh, so much for S.A's justice system this guy deserved life behind bars. damn! this is hopeless

  • marnusmnorval - 2012-02-28 11:50

    20 years and can apply for bail after 2

  • Nosiphom - 2012-02-28 11:51

    Jub jub, your days are numbered boytjie. The drunk driver who killed 5 joggers must be shivering now.

  • rowan.maulson - 2012-02-28 11:54

    Good on the judge... this cretin deserves every day of that sentence AND more.

  • edisetlhe - 2012-02-28 11:56

    So sad. That is lyk a slap in the face. Juz imagine....da moron killed 10 kids n ijured the others but all dt he gets is 20 flippin years??????

  • jen.bader - 2012-02-28 11:59

    Far to little, he should get life and sit for the rest of it.

  • Shirley - 2012-02-28 11:59

    A moment of madness causes a lifetime of sadness. Not only have ten families lost their beloved children but Humphreys family have lost a father/bread winner to! I only hope that this will make people think twice before making reckess decisions which will effect SO many lives!

  • Nyiks11 - 2012-02-28 11:59

    This is quite a hefty sentence for a man in his 60s ( or approaching 60) ,but it does send a strong message to would be offenders out there . I on the other have decided to stop drinking completely but continue driving , I've made some stupid decisions behind the wheel under the influence over the years .

      Shirley - 2012-02-28 12:22

      Unlike losing a child which is a LIFETIME sentence!

  • Elizabeth - 2012-02-28 12:05

    Thank you ANC - life has really become cheap (worthless) - wonderful example we are setting to rest of world and so SA is slipping down rung of ladder from a country to be proud of (prior to 1994) to third world (post 1994) to being a country of SHAME...

      Lanfear - 2012-02-29 13:23

      Where was SA a country to be proud of pre-1994? Who were proud except a few fortunate whites? The whole world saw us as nothing but scum. And we were. And FYI, South Africa had always been a third world country. So bugger off if you are SO ashamed. This man didn't commit deliberate murder, he made an error of judgement.

  • Nasiefa - 2012-02-28 12:05

    20 years is that all??? rot in jail you cake !!!

      Lanfear - 2012-02-29 13:24

      He will rot in jail, he is over 60, he'll probably die in jail.

  • Derk - 2012-02-28 12:06

    now Jub Jub must get 20 years,why are we waiting?

  • Chantal - 2012-02-28 12:06

    Our God don't sleep nor slumber!

  • Don - 2012-02-28 12:09

    Hope this serves as a warning for others, especially the taxi drivers. It can however never change what he did to those innocent children and the lives he has wrecked.

  • John - 2012-02-28 12:10

    Heard he was being such a smug bastard. Hope he can keep that smile as Tiny asks him to "bend over" nicely.

  • Bokfan - 2012-02-28 12:12

    This may be the turning point in SA's dreadful road death catastrophe. But I am puzzled. Surely his licence should have been cancelled once he was found guilty. Dont tell me he has been driving around all this time.