“Action Society calls for the rehabilitation program of parolees to be re-evaluated with immediate effect” said Action Society spokesperson, Kelly Baloyi, following the Western Cape High Court’s judgment for 55-year-old Jacobus Petoors convicted for kidnapping, rape and murder of eight-year-old, Regan Gertse, from Tulbagh.
“Petoors was not supposed to be allowed back into the community based on his previous convictions. The justice system failed eight-year-old Regan Gertse,” added Baloyi.
Petoors was convicted on July 24, 2012, and on October 29, 2011 for similar crimes.
“Communities are aware that early release of parolees increases the probability of a repeated offense. In many cases family members are forced to warn the rest of the community of parolees released without proper rehabilitation,” commented Baloyi.
Recently, President Cyril Ramaphosa signed into law section 36D(1) of the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Act. This means a suspect arrested and charged with a schedule 8 offense is required to provide a DNA sample which will be uploaded onto the National Forensics DNA Database.
“Previously it was not mandatory for scheduled 8 offenders to provide DNA samples. This resulted in the lack of solving cold cases, identifying repeat offenders and prosecutions of rapists and murderers,” said Baloyi.
“The integration of parolees back into communities lack the fundamental mechanisms to ensure the safety of communities. To solve this, Action Society believes the assistance of the private sector in partnership with communities will lessen the burden on the department of correctional service,” concluded Baloyi.