Monday, June 15, 2009

A schoolboy, a sword and satanism

Back to work today.
My month-long holiday in Australia is now all but a pleasant memory. I have returned home with a hacking cough and heavy cold. But alas - Monday is a work day.
Soon after arriving at the office I was assigned the story of the South African woman whose frozen corpse was found dumped in a wheelie bin in England, three years after she disappeared. Her husband - an unemployed German chef who remarried six months ago - had apparently been arrested for the murder and had appeared in court on Saturday.
I began working on the story and before I got very far I was instructed to drop it. One of the sister papers in the group had already done it.
Second assignment for the day: head out to the Joburg High Court and cover the sentencing of the Krugersdorp schoolboy killer who hacked a fellow pupil to death with a ninja sword. Then he savaged another pupil and two gardeners who tried to stop him - and they all survived.
Okay - off I go. I found the correct court and secured myself a good place. Then I had a coughing fit - one of those awful attacks where you cough and cough til you feel you can't breathe, your eyes start streaming, your nose runs and you sound like this whole thing just might escalate into a vomit. NOT cool. But anyway, it didn't. I just sat there looking like I'd been crying for days, taking deep breaths.
And then the accused was brought into the court room. His mom and dad waved excitedly at him as he beamed brightly and went to hug them. They had a joyous little family reunion and wept tears of joy. Family of the deceased boy sat nearby and wept tears of sorrow.
The sentencing did not happen as expected. Instead the defence asked for a postponement so they could get a criminologist to testify. The state then asked for the court to secure the evidence of one Kobus Jonker. I could not believe my ears. Years ago when I did my time working on community newspapers I wrote a fair amount about "Donker Jonker" - who I believe was also known as "The Hound of God" and " God's Detective". He started the occult-related crimes unit in the police. He used to give the most fantastic presentations about satanists and the stuff they were up to - devil worshipping in grave yards, killing cats, drinking blood and that kind of stuff. He had fabulous props at his media conferences - Bibles padlocked in thick chains, candles which he would eerily mention might be made from human fat and gruesome items like that. We were allowed to touch the articles but we were always warned to wash our hands afterwards. He went silent after human rights activists got his unit closed on grounds that our constitution guarantees freedom of religion.
So it's really exciting to hear that he may be testifying in court about the kid who listened to Slipknot's heavy metal music and then killed another kid. I thought it was only hysterical sensationalists who saw Satan's hand at work. Only two months to wait til the next court appearance!!


  1. Oy... so are they going to schlepp metal music through the wringer yet again?
    Glad you enjoyed your holiday!

  2. My kids listen to Slipknot and other heavy metal bands but I think its up to the parents to teach kids about accountability and realism. If you just blindly accept everything your child does and never advise them on rights and wrongs, they are going to grow up with warped ideas. Maybe some parents dont even know the difference between right and wrong.