Cop questions Meghan Cremer murder accused’s assault claims, asking where his injuries were

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Jeremy Sias in court.
Jeremy Sias in court.
Jaco Marais
  • Sergeant Sigqibo Cekiso of the provincial dog unit scoffed at accusations he had handcuffed Jeremy Sias before repeatedly kicking his feet out from under him, causing him to fall and hit his head.
  • The murder accused claims he was assaulted over three days and a dog was set on him.
  • All the officers involved in the alleged assault claim to know nothing of violence being inflicted on Sias.

If cops had kicked Jeremy "Bompie" Sias causing him to fall and hit his head, then where are the visible injuries?

This was the question raised by one of the officers implicated in the alleged assault of the man accused of Meghan Cremer's murder.

Sergeant Sigqibo Cekiso of the provincial dog unit scoffed at accusations he had handcuffed Sias before repeatedly kicking his feet out from under him, causing him to fall and hit his head.

"You would have to have injuries on your face or head," he responded, pointing out the area Sias was referring to at the Philippi police station was paved.

Sias was arrested on 5 August 2019.        

READ | Meghan Cremer's face was so badly disfigured that family identified her by jewellery, mom tells court

This after he was named as the person who had given Charles Daniels and Siraaj Jaftha, arrested while driving a car without number plates, the missing Toyota Auris of the then-missing Cremer.

Cekiso, together with sergeants Taswill Flink and Reagan Claassen, apprehended Sias at the Egoli informal settlement and took the three to the police station.

In the parking lot, according to Sias, he was assaulted by the officers, with Cekiso specifically punching him in the ribs, chest and repeatedly kicking his feet from under him, causing him to fall.

Cekiso denied this, saying there was no reason to use violence on "Mr Bompie" as he had not been "rebellious", other than getting into an argument with Daniels in Afrikaans.

"He was calm. There was no reason to act like that at any stage."

READ | Gaping hole left on woman's face after boyfriend bit her during deadly attack, court hears

He said he did not see his colleagues use violence on the suspects, either by hitting them with a wooden pole or setting a patrol dog on them.

"The primary function of the patrol dog is to apprehend a suspect. In this instance, he was already arrested. There was no reason for [the dog] to be used."

No gun was put to Daniels' head in his presence as claimed by Sias, Cekiso added.

And had the suspect been injured, the cell guard would not have accepted him into the cells, he said.

meghan
Meghan Cremer’s mother Gill and her brother Paul pictured outside court during a previous appearance.
Gallo Images Gallo Images/Brenton Geach

Advocate Bashier Sibda, for Sias, put it to him the police had a sense of urgency to find the then-missing woman, which was why they had resorted to assaulting his client.

Cekiso denied this, saying their involvement was limited to the car they had spotted without number plates and further investigations would be the responsibility of the detective.

Claassen, who followed Ceikiso into the witness box, denied witnessing any assault.

He denied the dog, for which he had been responsible, had been set on Sias.

"At no stage, was my dog taken from my vehicle," Claassen testified.

The two officers were testifying in a trial-within-a-trial regarding the admissibility of incriminating statements made by Sias to police in which he said he had killed a person before leading officers to her body in the early hours of 8 August 2019, days after his arrest in connection with the stolen car.

Cremer went missing on 3 August 2019. She had been strangled with a ribbon.

meghan cremer
Meghan Cremer.
Netwerk24 Netwerk24

The defence contended Sias had been assaulted, threatened, promised a lesser sentence in a lower court, and not properly informed he had the right to legal representation.

Duress

According to him, he had made the statements under duress.

Sias claimed to have taken her Toyota Auris for a joyride from Vadelandsche Rietvlei farm where he worked, and Cremer lived.

According to him, he later found her body in the boot of the car and disposed of it, fearing he would be blamed for her murder.

He denies killing her.

Last week, two doctors, who had examined Sias before and after the pointing out, testified they had only noted a 0.5cm abrasion on his back, which was healing, and Sias had told them of tenderness of his ribs.

Dr Matthew Wilson testified his injury was consistent with blunt force trauma but he could not speak as to how it was sustained.

His colleague, Dr Fatima Karjiker, who had examined Sias the night before, told the court Sias had said he had been beaten for three days by police.

She had prescribed him brufen and panado.

The trial continues next Wednesday.

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