Accused Man Convicted of Two Killings

A MAN accused of murdering his girlfriend and his cousin in two separate stabbing incidents at the end of 2009 and in March 2011 was convicted in the Windhoek High Court on one charge of murder and a count of culpable homicide yesterday.

Judge Naomi Shivute found the accused, Nekongo Noabeb (31), not guilty of murder but convicted him of culpable homicide in connection with an incident in which his girlfriend, Judika Uri-khos (28), died after she had been stabbed in the leg with a knife. The judge found that Noabeb had negligently caused the death of Uri-khos when he stabbed her in the thigh in the Okahandja area during the night of 25 to 26 December 2009.

Noabeb was convicted on a second murder charge, though. Judge Shivute found that he acted with a direct intention to kill when he stabbed his cousin, Edu Noabeb, in the chest with a knife at Arandis on 5 March 2011. Edu Noabeb (32) died the next day in a hospital at Swakopmund.

Noabeb pleaded not guilty to two charges of murder at the start of his trial in April last year. He denied that he had stabbed Uri-khos and claimed that she had stabbed herself in her right thigh while he and Uri-khos were wrestling with each other during a quarrel.

A major artery in Uri-khos’ right leg was cut in the stabbing. She bled to death at the scene of the incident.

Noabeb, Uri-khos and other people were on their way home from Gross Barmen, where they had spent the day, when the fatal incident took place.

In her judgement yesterday Judge Shivute noted that Noabeb had given two different versions on the question whether there had been physical contact between him and Uri-khos before she sustained the fatal injury. However, three witnesses told the court that there had been physical contact between the two of them, she noted. Judge Shivute found that Noabeb’s version of the events was improbable and had been proven to be false.

While she found that he assaulted Uri-khos before the stabbing and inflicted the stab injury on her, she also noted that the thigh of a person is not normally regarded as a vulnerable part of the body. However, Noabeb should have foreseen that by stabbing someone with a sharp object he could cause her death, the judge also reasoned. She concluded that he caused Uri-khos’ death negligently, and as a result was guilty of culpable homicide. Judge Shivute rejected Noabeb’s claim that he had acted in self-defence when he stabbed Edu Noabeb. She recounted that Noabeb also claimed in his testimony that he only pushed his cousin away from him while he had a knife in his hand and that the stabbing had been an accident. Such a claim contradicted his version of having acted in self-defence, she noted.

The judge found that the evidence before the court showed that after Noabeb and his cousin had been involved in a physical altercation in which Edu Noabeb had been the initial aggressor, Noabeb went to fetch a knife and stabbed Edu Noabeb in the chest when he returned.

At that stage Noabeb was not in imminent danger that would have allowed him to stab his cousin in self-defence, she found.

The nature of the weapon used, the place on his body where the late Edu Noabeb was stabbed, and the nature of the injury inflicted – it was found that the knife penetrated about 12 centimetres into his chest and went into his heart – indicated that Noabeb acted with a direct intention to kill, Judge Shivute concluded.

Arguments before Noabeb’s sentencing are due to be heard tomorrow.

Defence lawyer Titus Mbaeva is representing Noabeb. State aocate Simba Nduna is representing the State.

Source : The Namibian