Kirsty Theologo was burnt to death in satanic ritual. Photo: Supplied
Kirsty Theologo was burnt to death in satanic ritual. Photo: Supplied

Kirsty’s mom still wants answers

By Noni Mokati Time of article published Feb 25, 2012

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‘I’d like them to tell me why? What drove them to do this? Why my baby died this way?”

These are some of the questions that have dogged Sylvia Theologo ever since her 18-year-old daughter, Kirsty, was killed on top of a koppie in the south of Joburg last October.

This week she came face to face with Kirsty’s alleged killers at the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court for the first time. Lindon Wagner, 21, Robin Harwood, 18, Harvey Isha, 23, Lester Moody, 18, Jeremy King, 18 and a 15-year-old are accused of murder and attempted murder.

The state claims they tied up Kirsty and her 14-year-old friend Bronwyn, doused them with petrol and set them alight in an apparent satanic ritual on a koppie behind the Linmeyer swimming pool.

The injured girls then apparently walked 2km to Rosettenville to get help.

Bronwyn survived the incident, but Kirsty died a week later at the Chris Hani Baragwaneth Academic Hospital from the 75 percent burns she sustained on her upper body.

Yesterday Theologo broke down as she told how seeing the teenagers had affected her. “It was hard. It didn’t hit me until that evening. That’s when I realised what had happened during the day. I had looked at people who were once my child’s friends. Children I knew well,” she said.

The broken-hearted mother said she felt nothing but anger towards the six youths.

“I wish they could have gone through what my Kirsty went through. I wish they could bear the same scars that she endured. They deserve to stay in jail and pay for what they did.”

Theologo said she locked her children in the house for two months after Kirsty was killed in a bid to protect them.

“They were not allowed to go anywhere. Friends invited them and I refused. I didn’t want anything happening to them. It was a dark period in my life.”

So dark was that period that Kirsty’s death wedged a wall between the family members. “We still have our moments where we deal with her death. I see a change in my children and how this has affected them. I had to deal with a lot of backlash. I had to deal with my youngest son’s unhappiness. We will never be the same.”

Theologo said the separation anxiety she felt was compounded when five of her dogs were poisoned after Kirsty’s death. But, she said, she found a new strength after family members intervened and helped her through the trauma.

“I’m not scared anymore. I’m not going to worry about getting out of my house. I want to live my life. I’m a firm believer in God. Nothing can ever touch me or my children.”

Two of her dogs died from the poisoning, but the SPCA managed to save the other three, which have since been returned to her.

Theologo is adamant that the “devil” was not involved in the malicious actions the teens are alleged to have carried out. “It had nothing to do with Satanism. I believe this was a bunch of young children who carried out a bad deed.”

She said Kirsty had been a Christian and often went to church with the teenagers. “I wait for the day they (the accused) tell me what led them to do this. I’ve heard from Bronwyn. They now need to tell me their side of the story.”

Theologo said the koppie had always been known as a safe place; not a satanic site, but a party place for teenagers.

Asked if she ever considered going back to the swimming pool, Theologo said no.

“The pool has always been bliss for my family. But we can never go back there.”

During the teenagers’ court appearance on Tuesday, the court heard that the defence and prosecution were still waiting for a decision to be made by the National Director of Public Prosecutions.

Two of the accused, Moody and King, want to enter into a plea bargain with the state.

All the accused remain in custody except for the 15-year-old girl who was previously released into the custody of her parents and cannot be named because she is a minor.

Theologo vowed she would go to all their court appearances. “I owe it to Kirsty.”

The trial has been postponed to March 29.

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