Kimberley - The bail application of a 29-year-old man, who is accused of raping and impregnating his 13-year old stepdaughter, is expected to continue in the Kimberley Magistrate's Court on March 12, 2021.
The accused, who cannot be named in order to protect the identity of the child, allegedly started raping the girl when she was just six years old.
The investigating officer, Sergeant Moses Morris, who is attached to the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit in Kimberley, told the court that the matter was reported on March 5, 2021.
"The matter was brought to the attention of the unit by Social Services. We were informed that there was a minor who was sexually violated and impregnated by her stepfather. We took the victim to the Thuthuzela Care Centre where she was examined. It was confirmed that she was 20 weeks pregnant. At that stage the child was still 12 years old.”
Morris said in a statement obtained from the child, she told the police that the sexual abuse started when she was six years old. She made the statement in the presence of her mother.
"The complainant explained that these acts took place when her mother was not present," he said.
According to Morris, the child stated that she reported the incident to her mother but the accused then physically abused the mother.
The child said the incidents of sexual abuse did not end. According to the child, the last incident occurred on February 17, 2021, Morris testified.
He added that due to the advanced state of pregnancy, the child was unable to terminate the pregnancy. “We, however, still have to retrieve the DNA of the baby in order to determine the paternity.”
According to Morris the accused was arrested about three hours after the matter was reported.
The investigating officer told the court that he was opposing bail due to the seriousness of the matter.
"This is a Schedule Six offence and it involves a minor child. The child also took a long time before reporting the matter because she was afraid. Members of the public brought this matter to the attention of the authorities by making an anonymous report, which is an indication that whoever reported the matter also fears being victimised by the accused.
“The complainant and the accused both stay in Colville, which is a small residential area. If the accused is released on bail there, he would stay in the same residential area as the complainant.
“The seriousness and the prevalence of such offences in society also calls for the opposition of bail. The police and the justice system is under attack for not doing enough to protect the survivors of sexual abuse,” Morris said.
In an affidavit read to the court by the accused's legal representative, he stated that he intends to plead not guilty to the charges and requested the court to grant him bail of R300 as he has to care for his children.
The accused stated that he is the father of five children whom he is supporting financially, adding that he is not permanently employed.
He said that being in custody and awaiting the finalisation of his case will prevent him from supporting his children financially.
He stated that should he be granted bail he would not interfere with the State witnesses or avoid his trial and would report to the Galeshewe police station on a daily basis.