Marthinus Pelser will finally be sentenced on 16 February.
This comes after Magistrate Delize Smith and her two assessors only received the pre-sentencing and victim-impact reports today (9 February). Two social workers did read them to the court though.
The social worker who read the pre-sentencing report concluded that due to the fact that Pelser maintained his innocence and did not want to take responsibility for his actions, he could not be rehabilitated at this stage. She also said he needed to be in a structured environment such as prison. Responding to a question by Pelser’s defence she said she did not believe an alternative structure of rehabilitation, besides prison, would be suitable.
A second social worker then read the victim-impact report pertaining to Bianca Rothman, the mother of the deceased baby Deon Rothman. The report elaborated in-depth on the traumatic psychological, emotional and financial impact the murder has had on Bianca and her family.
When Pelser took to the stand to tell the court why he should not receive a life sentence, he said he would fight for his innocence “until the end”. When State Prosecutor Paska Temeki asked him if he had anything to say to the community, he replied, “To them? No.” Pelser also said he still had a lot he wanted to do on the outside.
Temeki finally argued for a life sentence to be handed down, saying there were no extraordinary circumstances and Pelser refused to accept responsibility. He also highlighted the fact that Pelser did not just murder “a human being, but his own son”. He also said the fact that each of the injuries on its own could have killed six-month-old Deon, showed Pelser’s intend to kill the infant.
Read the full article in next week’s Roodepoort Record.
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