Picture: African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Port Elizabeth - The case against a 22-year-old man charged with the murder of 2-year-old Hakeem Baartman was postponed in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Tuesday for a possible plea and sentencing agreement.

The 22-year-old alleged gangster, Marshall Thomas, made a brief appearance in court. He has been charged with the toddler’s November 2017 killing. 

His lawyer, Johan van der Spuy asked the court that the case be postponed for a possible plea deal. 

Baartman was in Helenvale in an area called “Die Gat” when gang violence erupted. The child was hit in the head by a stray bullet and died at the scene.

It was alleged that on November 18, 2017, the two-year-old boy was fatally injured while a 17-year-old teenager sustained a gunshot wound in the neck.

It was further alleged that the 17-year-old was sitting on the steps of a house in Hartbees Street in Helenvale when Thomas approached from an open field and started shooting at him.

Police said the victim ran into the street and Thomas continued firing at him.

During the shooting, the toddler was struck by a bullet in the head and passed away. 

The shooting at the teenager was gang-related, police said at the time. 

Thomas faces a range of charges which include murder and the possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition. 

The case was postponed until Thursday. 

African News Agency/ANA