Dad forgives convicted killer for driving over 7-year-old son with quad bike
Grant Stevens on Tuesday testified in mitigation of sentencing in the matter of the 18-year-old, who is a pupil at Robinvale High School, in the Atlantis Magistrate’s Court. The pupil earlier this month entered a plea of guilty to a charge of culpable homicide.
At the time, on July 30, 2016, the accused was 15-years-old.
On the day in question he drove over Jessi Stevens with his quad. The boy later died in hospital.
Reading out a statement, the father said: “We as parents suffered a great loss and my child was taken away in a manner that no human being should have. The one moment I looked through the window at my son who made a funny face and the next moment I can’t talk to him.
“I was raised to forgive people. After three years six months and five days the accused finally pleaded guilty.
“I forgive the accused because he was a child at the time of the incident. But the fact that he showed no remorse. I don’t believe what he said in court.”
The pupil, after taking the stand, apologised to the Stevens family and told the court that he and his family were advised not to approach or talk to Jessi’s family.
The court heard that the accused got the quad as a birthday present and on the day of the incident drove without any adult supervision.
“To Jessi’s family I plea from the bottom of my heart I ask forgiveness.
“I can’t put it into words about how I feel. I will never forget about Jessi. I was told by the investigative officer to stay away from you,” he said.
His mother struggled to find her words when she read out her plea. She told the court that she blamed her husband for the accident because he bought their son a quad.
“My son suffered a lot. He is an asthmatic and because of the incident was rushed to hospital and put into an induced coma.
“I cry myself to sleep at night when I think about the incident. This incident is something that he has got to think about for the rest of his life,” she said.
Sentence will be handed down on October 29, a day before exams.@TheCapeArgus