This was the last message sent by Refilwe Letebele, 28, to her former boyfriend and local rugby player, Siyanda Gxwati, 32. The next morning he allegedly stabbed her several times and then slit her throat.
The Kimberley Magistrate’s Court on Friday, through the testimony of Captain Sylvester Magugu, heard that Gxwati sent Letebele a message the night before she was murdered, saying that he will pick up his PlayStation at her house the next day.
Magugu was testifying in the bail application of Gxwati, who is charged with the murder of Letebele. She was killed at her home in Barkly Road on January 12 at around 8am.
The court heard that Letebele’s throat was slit and that she was stabbed in her upper body. The accused then apparently used the knife to stab himself 16 times and also attempted to cut his own throat.
Magugu said according to the pathology report Letebele died as a result of her throat being slit. “She also suffered seven stab wounds, which were all inflicted to her upper body, and had an eight-centimetre-long wound to the neck.
Family members and friends of Letebele, who were in the court gallery on Friday, gasped while others wept as the details of the brutal murder emerged. Letebele’s 13-year-old niece was with her at the time of the attack.
According to Magugu, the accused went to the house of the deceased under the pretence of collecting his PlayStation.
“According to family members of the deceased, the accused never entered the house of the victim before the alleged attack. Even during the time they were dating, he would always wait for her outside of the house.
“On the morning of the murder, the house assistant found the accused standing at the gate. He told her that he was looking for Letebele and the house assistant went into the house to call her.
“When the house assistant went tell Gxwati that Letebele was on her way, she found him already inside the house. The house assistant went outside and then heard the victim’s 13-year-old niece screaming for help,” he said.
Magugu testified that the young girl and the house assistant tried in vain to stop the accused from stabbing Letebele.
“When the house assistant went back into the house, she found the young girl on the back of the accused, trying to stop him from stabbing the deceased. Gxwati, however, continued to stab the victim as the child tried to fight him off.
“When he was done, he walked from the bedroom to the bathroom. Letebele was still alive at that time and was crawling on the floor. The house assistant and the girl tried to help her to her feet.
“Letebele told her niece to call her parents and the police. The accused suddenly came out of the bathroom, where he had stabbed himself several times, and dragged the knife across the neck of the deceased.”
Magugu told the court that Letebele started bleeding severely while the accused went back into the bathroom.
When the victim’s mother arrived at the house, the accused was still there.
“She tried to put towels on her daughter’s neck, however, the deceased died on the scene,” he said.
Magugu said that they now have evidence to support a Schedule Six offence, and not a Schedule Five as previously indicated. He said that police found evidence that the accused planned the incident.
“The accused had to receive medical treatment after the incident because he stabbed himself and also tried to slit his throat. A second knife was found inside his pocket when he was inside the ambulance.
“Upon searching the vehicle of the accused, which was parked in front of the house, a half brick was found inside. The brick had grey marks across it, which indicated that a knife was sharpened on it.
“The police seized two knives - a steak knife and an okapi knife - from the accused. The brick was also taken as evidence,” he said.
Magugu added that the fact that the accused went to the house armed with two knives and apparently used a brick to sharpen the knives, showed that he had intent to commit the crime.
“This murder was premeditated because why would the accused go to the house with two knives. The family also said that he had never entered the house previously, but that he did so on the day of the murder.”
Magugu said that, judging from messages on Letebele’s phone, it was clear that the accused was “stalking” her.
“The accused would send several messages to the deceased and she would not respond. In the messages the accused was begging the deceased to give their relationship another chance.
“In one of the messages she even told him that she could not believe that he was checking on her by driving past her house to see whether her car was there.
“The last message about him fetching the PlayStation was sent after 11pm on January 11, and the incident occurred the next morning, just hours after that message.”
Bail is being opposed as Gxwati might evade his trial by attempting to kill himself again.
“The accused already tried to commit suicide after he killed the deceased. He might just carry out his plan to kill himself again. Also, the community is up in arms about the incident. They might try to hurt him should he be released on bail,” Magugu said.
He also indicated that they are concerned about the safety of the witnesses in the case. “The 13-year-old (niece) is the main witness in this matter. The accused knows where the witnesses stay. He might also try and hurt the witnesses,” he said.
Defence indicated that they were “ambushed” into a Schedule Six bail application as it was previously stated that the matter was Schedule Five.
The court, however, said that it will take a decision on the Schedule after hearing evidence.
The case was postponed to today for the continuation of the bail application. The accused remains in custody.
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