Bail to abusers often precursor to murder; Action Society laments bail extension for boyfriend accused of killing young mother holding her nine month old baby

He threw an empty beer bottle at her, delivering a fatal blow to the head. She still had her nine month old baby in her arms as she died. Action Society lamented the bail extension granted to Austin du Plessis in the latest court appearance where the murder case of Lekeasha Marthinus was postponed. The accused was first granted bail of R3000 on 19 April.

“We are currently involved in 98 cases – most of them rapes and murders of which the majority of the perpetrators are the romantic partner. An upsetting pattern is emerging amongst the murder cases. The perpetrators standing trial for serious crimes, more often than not, have a history of violence and abuse against the victim before the ultimate murder takes place. More alarming, is the number of perpetrators who are out on bail at the time of the murder. By the time a victim goes to the police for a protection order, they already fear for their lives. If their abusers are then arrested when they breach the order, bail shouldn’t be granted, because of the increased risk of retaliation and escalated violence as can clearly be seen in the Sipokhazi Booi case, the Nadia Lotz case and many more,” according to Ian Cameron, Director of Community Safety at Action Society.

Action Society is in contact with the family to give them advice and support and have obtained a mandate to take the case further. The matter has been postponed to 25 August 2023.

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