Road rage killer gets 18 years jail

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Simanga Mthembu was yesterday sentenced to 18 years for killing a taxi driver in a road-rage incident last April.

The 37-year-old nurse shot and killed Derrick Majozi after the two had a confrontation on two separate incidents on one day.

The court heard, through evidence given by Mthembu's friend, that the two had first argued after Mthembu had to evade Majozi's taxi because he was driving dangerously near a busy taxi rank.

He told the court that in the first incident, both drivers got off their vehicles and swore at each other. He said Majozi was more aggressive than the accused.

"After they had a go at each other, they went on their separate ways, but as fate would have it, they met again six hours later and had another confrontation," he said.

He said an incensed Mthembu stopped his car in front of a taxi and shot Majozi three times.

Passing sentence, Pietermaritzburg high court judge, Chris Nicholson, said he understood how badly taxi drivers behaved, but that did not mean that they should be killed.

"Road rage does not mean that if you are driving and someone disturbs you, you have to shoot and kill that person.

"We know that many people are scared to drive near taxis because of their behaviour on the roads, but it does not mean that they should be killed," said Nicholson.

He said he would have given Mthembu the minimum sentence, which is life, but because the killing was not premeditated, he would send him to jail for 18 years, as an example to other potential road-rage killers.