Picture: African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Pretoria - A teenager accused of murder sobbed uncontrollably as he described how his co-accused fired two shots into the head of the secretary who was loved by all at the Rabboni Christian School in Brits. The youth, who is now 18, may not be named as he was still a boy at the time of the murder of Hester Koster in November 2016.

He said he had no idea about the friend’s intentions that day when they had asked Koster - affectionately called “Tannie SB” - for a lift into town after an exam. He told the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, he was shocked when his friend, who also cannot be identified due to his age at the time, overpowered Koster while she was driving. He forced her out of the car and bound her hands with duct tape. When she tried to run, he tripped her. “I turned away and I heard two shots. I turned back and I saw Tannie SB on the ground. She was bleeding from the head.”

The teenager cried so hard at this point that the court had to adjourn to allow him to compose himself. He sat with his head bowed in the witness stand, tears rolling down his cheeks. When he resumed his testimony, he said that after the shooting, his friend instructed him to get into Koster’s car. They then drove off, leaving the dying woman at the roadside.

“I was terribly afraid. I did not know what to do,” he said. He said that after their exam his friend said he wanted to get tape to fix his books. They got tape from the school handyman, and his friend had put it in his blazer pocket.

He told the court his friend used to bring the magazine of a firearm to school. He showed it to his classmates and bragged that he was going to join his gangster friends. On the day of the murder, the friend said he did not want to go home as his mother would insist he do schoolwork and not go to town. He asked the taxi driver to drop their school bags off at home.

The second boy said that before they became friends, the older boy had bullied him, and hit him in the chest. He said he had not taken the friend home as his parents would not have approved. The friend, who is now 19, has been convicted of murder and is serving a 25-year jail sentence. In his trial, he admitted he stole his father’s semi-automatic firearm and placed it in his schoolbag before the murder.

(Proceeding)

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