Judge lists injuries #CourtneyPieters suffered

Self-confessed child killer Mortimer Saunders. Picture: Kim Kay/Daily Voice

Self-confessed child killer Mortimer Saunders. Picture: Kim Kay/Daily Voice

Published Nov 7, 2018


Cape Town -  Day two of sentencing and judgment in the case against Mortimer Saunders, who is accused of raping and murdering three-year-old Courtney Pieters, is underway in the Western Cape High Court

As Judge Babalwa Mantame resumed the reading of her 82-page judgment she listed the injuries suffered by Courtney. 

The DNA of a male was found in the deep vaginal vault of the deceased. This tested positive for semen. 

Saunders has denied that he penetrated Courtney with his penis. 

Judge Babalwa stated that it was highly improbable that semen could enter the vagina with fingers. 

The only inference that can be drawn is that the accused penetrated the deceased with his penis, Judge Mantame said. 

It remains unclear if the penetration took place pre or post-mortem.

On Tuesday Mantame summarised testimonies of the 10 witnesses called by the State, and commented that one of the expert witnesses, forensic pathologist Johan Dempers, had been “careful and meticulous in his evidence”.

At the time of the child's death, Saunders was a lodger in her family's home.

Saunders was arrested in May last year after Courtney's was found on a rubbish heap in Bofors Circle, Epping Industria. She had been missing for nine days. He had participated in the search for her and supported her family during vigils held to pray for the child's safe return.

In May this year, Saunders admitted to killing the toddler by poisoning her - allegedly because he harboured ill feelings toward her mother. He said it was not his intention to kill Courtney and that he just wanted to make her ill. 

Judgment continues.

Daily Voice

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