De Jay’s Case Struck From Roll

AN ORDER striking the case from the court roll, brought the murder trial of retired teacher David de Jay to an end yesterday.

The last proceedings in De Jay’s trial in the Windhoek High Court was an order that was made by Judge Alfred Siboleka. He brought the trial to a close by saying: “The accused has died by committing suicide. The matter is struck from the roll.”

De Jay (63), who was due to be sentenced on charges of murder and defeating or obstructing the course of justice in connection with the death of his wife in February 2009, died in a Windhoek hospital on Friday evening last week. He was being treated in hospital after he took an overdose of medication in Windhoek Central Prison, where he was being detained, earlier last week.

Before De Jay’s case was struck from the roll yesterday, State aocate Palmer Kumalo handed a post-mortem examination report, a copy of De Jay’s death certificate and a copy of a letter that De Jay had written to a cellmate to Judge Siboleka. The documents became part of the trial record as the final exhibits in the case.

In the post-mortem report and death certificate the cause of De Jay’s death was stated as “consistent with drug overdose”.

The doctor who performed an autopsy on De Jay’s body also noted that laboratory results recorded in De Jay’s medical file at Katutura Intermediate Hospital, where he was being treated, showed that the levels of the painkiller paracetamol in his body were 182,1 – compared to normal values of between 10 and 20.

The one-page letter that De Jay had written to a cellmate, Dumingu Zuzee da Costa, was dated 13 May, with the time 03h00 written at the end of the letter.

“I had a very severe pain in my chest. Maybe it’s the end,” De Jay wrote to Da Costa.

He said he hoped that Da Costa got “out of this place” very soon, as “you guys don’t belong here”.

Turning to his own case, De Jay wrote: “You know I haven’t do a thing wrong. I haven’t hurt or murder anybody. I will never do a thing like that. Maybe God reveal the truth one day.” (sic)

De Jay was convicted on 24 April – three days after he had turned 63 years of age while in custody as a trial-awaiting prisoner – of murdering his wife, Tina de Jay (56), by stabbing her to death with a knife near Seeheim, south-west of Keetmanshoop, on 13 February 2009.

Defence lawyer Boris Isaacks defended De Jay during his trial, while another lawyer from Isaacks’ law firm, Milton Engelbrecht, represented De Jay when the verdict in his trial was delivered and with the return of his case to court this week.

Source : The Namibian