Dr Gérard Labuschagne delves into the murderous mind of ‘Boetie Boer’

Dr Gérard Labuschagne in Boetie Boer. Picture: Supplied

Dr Gérard Labuschagne in Boetie Boer. Picture: Supplied

Published Nov 15, 2023


New documentary ‘Boetie Boer: Inside The Mind of a Monster’ is the latest Showmax Original to debut on the platform.

Now in its final week, the documentary explores Gqeberha fisherman Stewart Wilken’s arrest back in 1997 in connection with the disappearance of a 10-year-old boy, Henry Bakkers, and his subsequent confession while in police custody.

Aside from murdering the child, he also shockingly confessed to murdering nine other victims which the police had not known about during his seven-year reign of terror.

In the documentary, Wilken’s heinous crimes are explored against the backdrop of original audio recordings of an interview with the killer himself by Dr Gérard Labuschagne in 2006.

Labuschagne, who took over the reins of the Investigative Psychology Unit from Dr Micki Pistorous in 2001, spoke of meeting Wilken during a special episode of True Crime South Africa that accompanies Boetie Boer.

“As we saw on that TV show Mindhunter, in the early days of the FBI, they tried to understand these types of criminals better, and they decided to go and interview them in prison,” said Labuschagne when speaking on the intention behind him and Colonel Jan De Lange going out to interview Wilken in 2006.

“Of course, we'd often interviewed serial murderers in the course of an investigation, but very often you're doing that with a specific goal - to get the person to confess or point out various crime scene locations, etcetera. So it has a very different purpose.

Director Jasyn Howes. Picture: Supplied

“You're not necessarily going to try to find out about the person's background and their thoughts as to why they did it. This interview [in 2006] was intended more to get just that background, his thoughts, and ideas.”

Labuschagne added that the fact that he was already convicted helped as it would likely allow him to be more open to sharing more. He also explained how he prepared for the interview.

“We had copies of the case docket,” he said.

“Historically, the Investigative Psychology Unit obviously knew about the case, and we had his confession, if you want to call it that, as well as background information about his upbringing and statements from his family that were in the docket.

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