Action Story: Lekeasha Marthinus

On a sunny day in Tafelsig, Mitchell’s Plain, the heartbroken parents of Lekeasha Marthinus sit in their house where pictures and news articles are stuck against the cupboards and walls, playing with their busy little grandchild. It has been a year since Lekeasha was taken from their and her son’s life.


The dark brown eyes of the cute toddler – about a year and a half – remind them of their daughter daily. Her boyfriend allegedly killed Lekeasha on 5 November last year. She, then only 18, was holding her nine-month-old baby in her arms when he swung a full bottle of beer to her head, which knocked her out.


Following the incident, her friends tried to wake her up, but she did not respond. She was rushed to hospital but was declared dead on arrival.


It has been an emotional year for the family; they’ve not only had to mourn the death of their child, but they had to attend court proceedings. All they want is justice, but to them, justice is slow.


The boyfriend was arrested but was granted bail of only R3 000. This left the parents of Lekeasha disappointed and angry. Lekeasha’s father, Russel, said it’s a day he cannot forget because she couldn’t understand why the justice system could allow someone accused of murdering his daughter back out into society.


“It was very hard for us to see him (the boyfriend) in court over the months. It was hard to talk to him, to say our daughter is not coming back. We couldn’t handle it when we heard he was granted bail; it was tough. However, we made peace; we forgave him, but we will not forget what he did to our daughter. She is never returning home,” he said.


Mr Marthinus added that the fact that the accused doesn’t show remorse for what he has done pains them.


Recently, the case was provisionally withdrawn, leaving the family in limbo, confused and frustrated. “We heard that a few things were outstanding pertaining to the case. We couldn’t believe what was happening,” he said.


Action Society also followed up to find out the reason for the withdrawal and learned that as soon as certain particulars are obtained, it will be put back on to the court roll. “We received feedback from the investigating officer recently, and it now looks like it will be back in court again; this makes us feel so much better,” said Mr Marthinus.


He added that the family wants to see justice.


Lekeasha’s mother, Anne, told Action Society that, while it has been a tough year, her grandchild keeps her smiling and constantly reminds her of her daughter. “We are raising this little one. He is so busy, but we are trying to be strong for him. He still wakes up wanting his mommy, but then we point to a picture of her even though he doesn’t understand yet.


“We are pensioners, and it’s hard, but we will show him love every day of his life. We do hope at the end of this case, we will see justice, that’s all we want,” she said.


For now, the family lives in the hope that soon they will get a call to say that the matter is back in court and that the law will deal with the person who took their daughter from them.

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