South African mechanic beat step children after suffering ‘traumatic experiences’

by | Aug 17, 2020 | Cops | 0 comments

A South African mechanic who used a belt and his fists to violently beat his three step children who were aged under 11, has been released after four months in jail.

The NT Supreme Court heard the man had suffered “a number of traumatic experiences” in his life which may have contributed to the attacks on the three children two years ago.

He moved from South Africa to the Northern Territory and married to the children’s mother in early 2018, before committing the attacks later that year.

In late December 2018, the man used his belt to beat on one of the children before assaulting a second sibling using his hands and fists.

The court heard the man, who had been drinking at the time, became angry when the two children were not home by dark.

He committed the assault on the third child earlier in 2018, losing his temper when the youngster stepped on a car part on the ground while the pair were working on a vehicle together in their backyard.

All children were aged under 11 at the time of the attacks, with their mother using make up to cover up their bruises so they could return to school.

The court heard the man was suffering chronic post-traumatic stress disorder due to several “traumatic experiences” during his life, when he committed the attacks.

This included his infant son dying in his arms, and being a victim of home invasions, car-jackings and bank robberies while he was living in South Africa.

Justice Judith Kelly said the man had also faced “further trauma” while working in a war zone as a civilian contractor for the US Military in Afghanistan.

“I have read the psychiatric report and it is apparent that you have undergone a number of traumatic experiences during your life, including the tragic death of your infant son,” she said.

“You have been the victim of a carjacking, you witnessed a bank robbery (and) have been subjected to a home invasion by armed robbers on your hobby farm in South Africa.

“And you experienced further trauma working in a war zone as a civilian contractor to the US Military in Afghanistan.

“Now, all of that has apparently led to your developing chronic post-traumatic stress disorder with an associated chronic major depressive illness.”

Justice Kelly sentenced the man to four months in jail, saying he was free to go as he had previously served the time in 2019.

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