Johannesburg – An emotional Bontle Mokoena gave harrowing accounts to the court of the family’s frantic search for her sister, and the apparent nonchalance with which murder accused Sandile Mantsoe treated the search.
Day two of the Mantsoe trial into the murder of Karabo Mokoena at the High Court in Joburg on Tuesday also heard of how Mokoena was allegedly brutally assaulted by the accused; according to the deceased’s sister Bontle.
“On her birthday (March 27), we couldn’t get hold of Karabo. Only to find out, when she called me the next day, saying: ‘Bontle, I’m in hospital,'” a gutted Bontle said.
She added that she visited her sister at the Morningside Mediclinic in Sandton, where she found that Karabo had suffered “excruciating injuries”.
“She told me that Sandile had assaulted her. She was all bruised. Her eyes were bruised; her leg was bruised,” Bontle testified, adding she couldn’t get hold of Karabo as Mantsoe had allegedly “smashed” the deceased’s phone.
Video footage the accused apartment building also featured on day two, where Bontle said she was shown CCTV footage of her sister entering the building in Sandton.
Bontle added that her mother told her to remain in Sandton on the evening of May 2017, where the mother arrived at the building with family, some of Karabo’s friends and the Diepkloof SAPS.
“My mom asked him (Mantsoe), ‘where is Karabo?’ He said: ‘Mamzo, I don’t know where she is, but I didn’t kill her,'” Bontle detailed.
An early tea adjournment was called after Bontle broke down, recalling how Karabo loved Mantsoe, but how their mother had warned the deceased about him.
“What I recall is that Karabo would do anything for Sandile; anything for Sandile. Even after she was assaulted, my mother told Karabo: Leave this man, he will kill you one day,'” a grief-stricken Bontle said, eliciting an early adjournment.
Mantsoe is facing three charges of assault with the intention to do grievous body harm, murder and defeating the ends of justice for allegedly burning the 22-year-old’s body after killing her.
He had pleaded not guilty, saying Mokoena had committed suicide.
The trial continues.