In a very bizarre case that has left the people in the community of KwaZulu Natal shell shocked, a young man has been found guilty of raping and assaulting a frail seventy four year old woman in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Monday.
Presenting its case, the prosecution led by Candy Kander, stated that in August, 2012, the woman, who appeared in the High Court as a witness, said she had just finished showering in her granny flat when she saw the man, Mduduzi Phenyane undressing in her kitchen. The man is then purported to have proceeded to assault the woman until she fell onto the floor. The thirty-three year old man is also said to have started choking the woman while she was still standing and continued even when the woman was prone on the ground. According to the prosecution’s evidence, the man then raped the woman when she was on the floor.
While there appears to have been respite in the raping, it appears from the evidence led by the State that the assaulting did not stop at all. The woman continued to give evidence that she was assaulted ceaselessly by being punched and kicked every time she made any attempt to move. The State also led evidence in the High Court that it further counted against the man that some of the woman’s possessions were found in the man’s room. These possessions include the woman’s sewing machine.
Even though the High Court Judge, Anton van Zyl convicted Phenyane of assault with the intention of committing bodily harm and also aggravated robbery in addition to the rape charge that was brought against him, the accused continued disputing the facts presented by the prosecution, arguing, instead that he did not go anywhere near the accused.
Even though Judge van Zyl wanted to pass sentence on Monday, he was stopped by the prosecution that said they wanted time to get details of Phenyane’s past convictions with the result that the case was adjourned to Wednesday for sentencing.