Man who viciously cut child's throat loses appeal

2016-06-30 21:17
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Pietermaritzburg - A 22-year-old man cut the throat of a 4-year-old boy so viciously the child will have to live with a tracheostomy for the rest of his life, the Pietermaritzburg High Court heard on Thursday.

Thamsanqa Mtshali failed in his appeal before the court to have his 15-year-jail sentence for attempted murder reduced.

He had pleaded guilty to attempted murder and was convicted in the Mtubatuba Regional Court in May 2014. He said he sought revenge against the child's mother, believing she had been unfaithful to him.

Prosecutor Johan du Toit told the appeals court the boy must have endured unmitigated terror when wrestled from his mother and subjected to horrific torture, he said.

The boy would have died had he not been rescued.

Acting Judge Avril Potgieter, who rejected Mtshali's appeal, said the attempted murder of the child was the most disturbing thing she had come across. The doctor who testified said the child had difficulty speaking and breathing.

His carotid artery was visible after the attack.

The mother said she was reluctant to send him to school because of other children's reaction to his wound.

A tracheostomy involves cutting into the front of the neck to insert a tube into the trachea (windpipe) to help breathing.   

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