Pretoria - Garsfontein resident Louis Eksteen, 45, was beaten at least 13 times over the head and in the face with a walking stick by a self-confessed drug addict and suffered a fractured skull.

He was so severely beaten that four of the injuries he had suffered, could have caused his death - brain and skull injuries, blows to his chest and neck and the loss of blood.

This is according to pathologist, Dr Janette Verster, who testified in the North Gauteng High Court trial of Juda Joseph Plekenpol, 31.

He has been convicted of murdering and robbing Eksteen on April 11 last year in his house after pleading guilty to the charges.

He said he met Eksteen through a mutual friend, Eddie Pollard. They had met at a gay bar in Pretoria and he went home with Pollard, a lodger in Eksteen’s home. When Pollard moved out, he and Eksteen became friends and he often visited.

Plekenpol said Eksteen used to cook meals for him and they sometimes used drugs together.

On the evening of the murder they again had a meal together and sat talking. They had a pleasant evening until Eksteen made a sexually inappropriate remark - in crude terms, he had suggested they have sex “all night long” on the couch.

Plekenpol said he tried to ignore the remark but Eksteen grabbed his arm, saying they should go to his room. He tried to pull away but stumbled. He said he was provoked and attacked Eksteen with a cane.

Plekenpol said he could not remember how many times he had hit Eksteen across the head and upper body. When Eksteen tried to get up Plekenpol kicked him.

He then realised the man could die from his injuries. Plekenpol said he tied Eksteen’s hands behind his back and stuffed cloth into his mouth before dragging him to the bathroom. “In a state of shock” he decided to rob Eksteen to sell his goods to get drugs to get over the shock because of what he had done.

The State called the pathologist to testify in aggravation of sentence to prove the attack on Eksteen was brutal. The doctor said Eksteen’s injuries included multiple facial lacerations and a broken tooth. His entire face and skull were covered in blood.

Eksteen’s brother Theunis, who comforted his mother Adri Eksteen in court, said outside court his brother was neither gay nor a drug user. “No drugs were found on him and I know for a fact he never used drugs. Louis was according to us also not gay. He was divorced and had a 12-year-old daughter.”

Theunis said the family did not hate his brother’s killer, but would like to see him off the streets. “It was a particularly brutal murder.”

Adri said she too had forgiven her son’s killer as she was not prepared to carry hatred in her heart.

Sentencing is on September 12.

Pretoria News