Johannesburg - The 11-year-old Springs boy, abused and kept captive with the rest of his family allegedly by his father, had two black eyes, swelling, bruising and several cuts and scars – and those are just the injuries to his face.
These details are contained in the medical report done on the child shortly after his father was arrested, which The Star has independently obtained.
The father – who cannot be named to protect the identity of his family – appeared in the Springs Regional Court on Thursday morning where his case was postponed until July 25.
Dressed in a formal white shirt and dark grey trousers, the man bounced on his feet as he stood in the dock during his brief appearance.
He is alleged to have kept his family captive and repeatedly abused them, raping his wife multiple times and exposing his children to pornography.
Last week, the father of five allegedly tried to slit his wrists in the court’s holding cells after he was denied bail. His wrists were not visible on Thursday morning because of his long-sleeved shirt.
The medical report which was performed on the boy, known as a J88, detailed the extent of the child’s injuries.
The nurse who performed the exam said he suffered from two black eyes which were “deep purple, purple to green” in colour and there was swelling around both eyes.
There were also notes of bruises which almost covered both of his cheeks and two smaller bruises on his jaw and next to his ear.
The boy had five scars, three on the top of his head and two on the left side of his neck just below his jaw, two cuts to his lip and one on his right ear.
The report also details the boy’s other injuries, including “several scratches on the left groin area of anterior torso”.
The list of bodily injuries comprises 23 points and some of the points deal with several injuries.
For instance, two points describe multiple circular scars between 0.3cm and 1cm in size all over his back and left side of his stomach.
A 7cm scar on his left ankle and five “tramline” bruises on his buttocks were the largest injuries in size noted.
Although it is not included in the report, a tramline bruise is normally caused by being hit with a “rod or baseball bat”, according to an article in the UK-based Journal of Clinical Pathology.
The J88 describes some of the injuries as healed or in the healing stage. The father’s case was postponed because the Director of Public Prosecutions requested investigators to clear up some queries around the matter, said the prosecutor, Gcobani Lungu.
It is likely the case will be moved to a high court after his next appearance.
The courtroom was packed on Thursday morning with media and supporters of the alleged victims, like Margie Harber.
Harber, who runs a children’s charity called Wild Wild Guardians, was one of the supporters and was pleased the case was postponed.
“It’s good, they can get all the evidence together and get the psychological tests,” she said.
Riehette Kirton expressed her disgust at the alleged abuses.
“He should stay inside,” she said.
In a psychological assessment opposing bail, the head of the police’s investigative psychology unit, Brigadier Gérard Labuschagne, described the father’s alleged behaviour as “excessive and in some instances tantamount to torture”.
“The alleged behaviour is indicative of psychological and physical manipulation of persons in weaker positions than the accused.”
The investigating officer, Rudolf Jansen, told the court last week that police went to the house on Plantasie Road, Springs, to conduct their initial investigation after receiving information that a boy was severely assaulted.
Upon arrival at the house, they searched for the boy but his parents would not reveal his whereabouts.
The officers returned on May 21, the following day, to conduct an investigation.
Jansen said while they were there, rats ran around the “filthy house” freely, rat droppings were everywhere, and clothes were strewn in every room.
Jansen described the accused as a man who did not care for his family. The court heard later that on that morning, when the police arrived at the house, the accused had allegedly taken his son and hid him in an outside room on the property.
The boy was forced to sleep in that room on a bed with the accused’s tenants before being driven to relatives in the Free State.