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‘Now I’ll never know why he killed my kids’

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DAILY VOICE

Two-year-old Lionel Messi Shanmugan and four-year-old Shaylin Petersen.

The man accused of killing his two-year-old son and the boy’s four-year-old half-sister has died, reports said.

The 46-year-old accused of slitting the throats of his two-year-old son Lionel Messi Shanmugan and his girlfriend’s four-year-old daughter, Shaylin Petersen is reportedly dead after family members were tasked with turning off his life support.

On Thursday, Loganathan “Owen” Shanmugan’s wife of 26 years, Patricia Shanmugan exclusively told the Daily Voice they were waiting for his brother to arrive from Durban to turn off his life support after he was declared brain dead.

It was reported on Friday morning that he died late on Thursday night.

Police say Shanmugan, 46, went on a murderous rampage on Wednesday morning before allegedly turning the knife on himself inside their modest Wendy house in Hillview, near Muizenberg.

On Thursday night, Shanmugan’s grieving girlfriend, Yolandi Petersen, 29, was near breaking point when she recalled the morning she lost her two little angels.

She embraced her two older kids Ashwin, eight, and Anastacia, 11, saying she wished she knew the answers as to why a man who loved the two children so dearly could end their lives so violently.

Earlier, Yolandi was unaware doctors were preparing to switch off his life support at Groote Schuur Hospital and was soon informed by her family.

The young mother had just returned from the mortuary where she identified the bodies of her children with her ex-husband Anthony Petersen.

“I want to know what went through his mind. I am hurt. He loved his children and those two were special to him. I want to know why he did this,” she said.

And while she may never get her answer from him, she will never forget the events of that fateful Wednesday.

Yolandi said it began as normal, at 6am.

The mother of four prepared for work day; she had started a new job as a cleaner just three months ago. But Yolandi claims a very jealous and obsessive Shanmugan insisted she stay at home to look after her children.

“I was up at 6am and I wanted to leave home at 6.25am,” she explained to the Daily Voice.

“He said I must look after my own children and I told my friend to call my boss and say I can’t be in.

“When I left home at 7.45am, my older children went to school and the small ones to crèche.”

Yolandi then boarded a train to Muizenberg Magistrates’ Court to obtain an interdict against Shanmugan.

She claims he became obsessive and jealous.

“He used to beat me two years ago but it stopped and now he has been verbally abusing me,” she said.

“Three months ago, I got a job and he accused me of cheating with my boss and would call my boss and me and ask where I am.

“He also accused me of having affair with the men at church, so I stopped going.”

Yolandi sat waiting at the courthouse and says Shanmugan called her three times demanding to know where she was.

“The second time he called, he said he is fetching Lionel and taking him to the clinic,” she recalled.

“I said no and that I will take him. The third time, he called and I heard the television in the background. I heard him calling Lionel, saying, ‘daddy is bleeding’.”

She said she didn’t take him seriously because she heard Lionel laughing in the background.

Yolandi then managed to get a court date for July for the interdict and left for home at 10.15am.

She boarded a train, unaware that her little angels’ lives had already been violently snuffed out.

When she arrived home, she heard Shanmugan inside making sounds.

“I opened the gate and saw the door was locked from the inside because the chain was on the inside,” she added.

“I could hear his voice in the background and I thought he is taking long to come to the door.

“I went to the bedroom window and I saw my children lying on the bed, they were dead and I ran to Charmaine (her neighbour).”

It was then that concerned neighbours broke down the door and found Shanmugan, who allegedly told them he had killed the children.

Yolandi believes he wanted to wipe out all her children because he also visited Ashwin and Anastacia’s Zerilda Park Primary School but the principal wisely refused to let them leave.

Yolandi said he was accompanied by an as yet unidentified woman.

“I want to know what woman was with him at the school,” she said.

“His family has not come to pay their respects, like my children meant nothing.”

Daily Voice and IOL


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