Nicholas Ninow’s grandmother, Pauline Gericke, has told the High Court in Pretoria that the state should not only see Ninow as the Dros rapist but someone with a good side whom she loved.
Gericke, during day two of Ninow’s sentencing proceedings, argued that her grandson had deep issues that had challenged him throughout his life. She mentioned his recurring drug problems, which apparently made him react impulsively.
According to Gericke, Ninow sought help and attended a rehab centre called Healing Wings, but got hooked again because of his mother.
In closing her testimony, she appealed to the media and the gallery not to judge her daughter too harshly as she had turned her life around.
Karren Botha took the stand to outline a compiled victims impact report. She described how the victim clearly remembered the attack, and mentioned how the victim suffered nightmares as a result of the incident.
“I remember he has brown hair. I see him sometimes when I have nightmares,” Botha told the court. “I don’t speak to anyone because I don’t want to put stress on my family. He told me if I told anyone, he would kill me.”
Botha described how the victim’s body language was constantly in a state of fear and anxiety.
“She is scared of mostly men at restaurants.”
Botha went on to elaborate on how the victim was found to have wet her bed on the day before her initial testimony in court. The eight-year-old victim said she wanted Ninow to learn his lesson in jail.
When asked what she would say to Ninow, she reportedly said: “He must think of himself and don’t allow anyone to push him around.”
The victim could have long term side effects, such as depression, anxiety and self-esteem issues, Botha said in conclusion.
Ninow’s defence argues that although the accused had a drug problem, it did not excuse his actions. He told the court how long term imprisonment was necessary, the state had to try and fix individuals. The magistrate responded to argue that if Ninow was sober on the day, he could not have done what he did. He said drugs and alcohol apparently led him to act a certain way.
Ninow has been convicted of raping an eight-year-old girl in the bathroom of a Silverton Dros restaurant in September last year.
The trial continues.