'horrific killing'

AN officer investigating the murder of a University of Limpopo student broke down and wept when he described the crime scene to the Polokwane magistrate's court.

AN officer investigating the murder of a University of Limpopo student broke down and wept when he described the crime scene to the Polokwane magistrate's court.

Warrant Officer Mabetha Ramoshaba told the court on Wednesday that Nkosinathi Mhlongo's brain was scattered over the road after he was allegedly thrown out of a moving bus near the Turfloop campus of the University of Limpopo by three other students.

Mhlongo was allegedly thrown out of the moving bus by fellow students George Tsoai, 26, Raymond Mabelebele, 25, and Tibane Serumula, 24.

This happened after Mhlongo had earlier been assaulted with bricks, allegedly by the accused.

The students were returning from a trip to Pretoria on February 22 2008.

Ramoshaba said Serumula said he saw his co-accused assaulting Mhlongo and then throwing him off the bus as it approached the campus.

Serumula allegedly gave this statement to the police after his arrest. Yesterday he denied having made the statement but confirmed that he had been interrogated by Ramoshaba.

When giving testimony during a trial within a trial, Ramoshaba started crying when he gave a graphic description of the horrible crime scene.

He told the court that Mhlongo had suffered a cracked skull and that his brain was scattered all over the road.

Magistrate Doctor Nkuna pleaded with the police officer to be strong and to continue with his testimony.

Ramoshaba said he took statements from the suspects and witnesses and was surprised that Serumula was now disputing this.

Prosecutor Sam Mamabolo submitted that Serumula was an unreliable witness who wanted to mislead the court by changing a version of his own statement.

He warned Serumula that he could pay dearly for other people's sins.

Other witnesses who were also on the bus told the court that it was Tsoai and Mabelebele who had assaulted Mhlongo.

After hearing Ramoshaba's evidence, Nkuna ruled in favour of the state as Serumula had failed to convince the court that the statement was not his.

Mabelebele confessed that he had also hit Mhlongo while he was trying to get Tsoai to stop the assault.

The trial was postponed to June 9 for judgment.

'The brains of the deceased were scattered all over at the crime scene'

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