Pretoria - A post mortem examination on the remains of murdered 72-year-old Mamelodi resident Makanana Mathe, who was killed and mutilated by her son, revealed that two of her body parts were missing.
Her decapitated head and several other parts of her body were found on her bed, hidden under blankets, while there were some parts found in a bucket next to the bed.
The only inference is that after her son John Mathe, had killed her, he had chopped her up so that he could dispose of her body, the prosecution on Thursday told the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria.
Mathe, 41, did not deny that he had killed his mother, but he claimed that “the voices told him to do it.”
He pleaded not guilty to murder, as he said he never had the intention to kill her.
Mathe said only after he made the grizzly finding the next day, did he recall that he stabbed her with his “little knife used to cut apples with.”
But the police found a bigger knife and an axe under the mother’s bed after her body was discovered.
Mathe said he had no recollection of chopping his mother’s body up, but he concluded that it was him as he had blood on his hands and his knife, which was always next to his bed, was found next to the mutilated body pieces.
There was no blood on the bed where some of her remains were found, but there was lots of blood in the bedroom. According to the State this proved that she was killed next to the bed and that Mathe later placed some body parts on the bed and others in the bucket.
Mathe said he was not to be blamed for her death, as he simply acted on the voices in his head, which had become “louder and louder.”
Mathe said this was the first time he had heard voices and it immediately stopped after the killing during the April Easter long weekend last year.
He was earlier send for observation to Weskoppies psychiatric hospital, where a panel of psychiatrists found that he did not suffer from any mental defect.
Prosecutor Salome Scheepers said there was no voices in his head.
“This is a made-up story for him to get out of what he had done,” she said.
Mathe lived with his elderly mother and said he took care of her. According to him and his sister, they were a close knit family who shared their problems with each other.
Rosina Mathe testified that there was no reason for her brother to kill their mother. She cried bitterly when she said she was at first angry about him killing their mother, but she went to visit him in jail and he explained to her that the voices made him do it. She described her brother as a gentle, peaceful person.
Scheepers meanwhile said while it is not sure what the motive for the killing was, there does not need to be a motive to prove murder.
She argued that Mathe had the intention to kill his mother and he made sure she was dead by chopping her up.
Scheepers said it could not have been an easy task to cut the body up and it must have taken some time.
She also questioned why, if he was innocent, he lied to his family about his mother's whereabouts and why he didn't call the police when he saw she was dead.
Mathe claimed he only realised the next day, when he discovered her mutilated body, that she was dead. But Scheepers said instead of seeking help, he sat on the veranda, where one of his friends found him.
He acted calm and even made them something to eat.
The defence, on the other hand, insisted that Mathe could not appreciate what he was doing while he killed his mother, due to the voices in his head.
Judge Cassim Sardiwalla remarked that Mathe never explained exactly what the voices told him.
“If your defence is the voices, you will have to tell me about it,” he told defence counsel.
Mathe’s advocate maintained that he could not explain exactly what the voices said.
Judgment will be delivered on May 18.