•Will Thabo Masilo Hang?
•Judgement set for next month
It is 14 months since murder-accused Thabilo Masilo presented his final submissions before court.
On December 14, he will finally learn his fate.
On December 14, he will finally learn if his self-defence stance will save him from the hangman’s hungry noose.
Masilo’s judgement day marks the climax of a drawn-out murder case that dates back to November 2012.
The 27-year-old is accused of stabbing Tshepang Motlhabane to death at her home in Gaborone’s Phase IV location during an apparent robbery gone wrong.
However, Masilo insists Motlhabane, who was a Form Five pupil at St Joseph’s College, was his girlfriend and invited him over because ‘she was home alone’.
The accused, who is a convicted rapist – a crime for which he is currently serving a ten-year sentence – further claims the couple became embroiled in a heated argument leading to Motlhabane grabbing him viciously by the balls.
“He (Masilo) was in great pain on being held by the testicles and at first tried to break the hold by slapping the deceased,” reads part of Masilo’s final submission, exclusively seen by The Voice.
“When the deceased would not let go and he was under immense pain, he used the only object available at the scene to break her grip. It is quite clear that the accused didn’t intend the death of the deceased as a consequence. He stabbed merely to break the grip,” continues the submission delivered by the defendant’s lawyer, Kgosietsile Ngakaagae.
“It is simply unfortunate that in the very end the knife tragically punctured an important vessel leading to the unfortunate and regrettable death of the deceased,” maintains Masilo’s defence team.
According to Masilo, the trouble between the couple started when he asked Motlhabane to return the cellphone and cash he had borrowed her.
He further stated in court that after the fight ensued and he stabbed her in defence, the deceased then ran away, whilst bleeding and pressed the security panic button before locking herself in one of the rooms.
Masilo says he then took off his clothes which were covered in blood and put them in a plastic bag before drinking a poisonous chemical and taking refuge in the ceiling.
He says he later fell from his hiding place as he was chocked by a foul smell emanating from the roof.
For their part, the state described Masilo’s version of events as an afterthought, noting his defence of a fight breaking out between the two ‘should have come out from the beginning’.
The state further admitted that they were basing their arguments on circumstantial evidence as no one actually witnessed Masilo stabbing the deceased.
On December 14, Lobatse High Court Judge Abednigo Tafa will deliver judgement.
On December 14, it finally comes to an end – Masilo will be praying it’s not a permanent one!