A 21-year-old woman, who intends to conduct her own defense, appeared in the Lüderitz Magistrate’s court on charges of murder, attempted murder and arson after she went on rampage of revenge and set a house on fire in which two men, who she accused of raping her, were sleeping .
The community of the normally tranquil harbour town was rocked by the news that the 29 year-old Sebastian Jansen died as a result of the fire that burned out of control inside the house and a second young man sustained severe burn wounds and is critical but stable condition in hospital.
The incident was confirmed by the commander of the Namibian Police’s Public Relations Division, Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi. He said at this stage the investigation is being hampered by the fact that the second burn victim was not yet able to give his account of events to detectives.
“It is alleged that the young woman and the two men went on a drinking spree and ended up at the house of the mother of one of the young men. They continued their drinking and drugging spree at a second house where the young woman said the men started assaulting her. She also stated to investigators that the men took turns in holding her down and raping her repeatedly.”
According to Deputy Commissioner Kanguatjivi the alleged assault and rape took place at a house in a neighbourhood known as Area 2 between 02:00 and 03:00 on Tuesday morning.
The woman told investigators that she managed to flee from the men and after a while returned to the house to set fire to it while they were sleeping inside.
Only upon questioning the woman about why she set the house on fire did she tell police officers about the alleged gang rape. The charges of rape were only laid with the police afterwards.
The second burn victim has not been identified yet and the young woman who made her first appearance in court on the charges of murder, attempted murder and arson, cannot be identified because she is a rape victim.
Assistant Magistrate Linda Nakale who formally informed the rape victim and murder accused about the charges against her. She was also informed that the charges against her are of a very serious nature and that she should apply for legal aid from the state. The accused person, however, indicated that she will conduct her own defense.
The state prosecutor informed the court that the state opposes bail on the grounds that investigations into the matter are still at a very early stage and that the charges against the accused person are very serious.
Before postponing the case and remanding the accused person in custody until 28 March this year, the assistant magistrate informed the accused person that it is her right to bring a formal bail application to court before her next appearance in court.
No formal charges have been laid against the young man in hospital. He faces charges of assault and rape.
In the meantime the murder investigation against the 25-year-old Simon Sam Ileni Shoongeleni who stands accused of murder after he stabbed Fidel Jacob Gaseb (19) to death at the University of Namibia campus in Khomasdal about a year ago still has to be finalised.
Gaseb held Shoongeleni at knife point and attempted to rob him of his last N$20. Shoongeleni overpowered Gaseb and stabbed him with his own knife.