Concerns Over Serial Killer Parole Hearings


Parole Concerns

Eyewitness News has learnt that police are extremely concerned about a series of parole hearings due to take place before the end of the year involving some of the country’s most notorious serial killers.

Correspondence between the police and the Department of Correctional Services shows that at least one parole report has been compiled without any mention of the fact that the applicant is a serial offender.

The police’s concern is that hearings could be held without the parole boards being given all the background facts.

However, the department said these kinds of cases are treated with extreme caution and few parole applications are actually granted.

A court ruling earlier in 2011 allowed certain prisoners serving life sentences to apply for parole earlier than expected.

Eyewitness News understands the police’s investigative psychology section has identified a group of around 10 serial killers including Stewart Wilken, Bongani Mfeka and Norman Hobkirk.

The section’s fear is that files detailing their crimes can get lost in the prisons system and that if a prisoner is transferred not all of his files travel with him.

This means parole boards risk making decision without having all the information.

However, the department is adamant the parole hearings are thorough and inmates who pose a danger to society will not be set free under any circumstances.

Retired sleuth Piet Byleveld has said these types of criminals cannot be rehabilitated and should remain behind bars.

 

This is not unheard of. Parole Boards do not always get to hear the full impact of the crimes that were commited. That is why so many victim’s families make sure to appear at all parole hearing, same thing with district attorneys.

Paperwork not only gets lost but sometimes they get scanned over instead of actually being read. I know that is not how it is supposed to work, but let’s be honest. Mistakes get made and in thhe case of releasing a violent criminal that mistake can cost lives.

I can not believe that these guys are on the list of prisoners that could get paroled. Aren’t there any non-violent offenders for the list?

Stewart Wilken

Stewart Wilken appeared in court on February 3, 1997, charged with the murders of his daughter and Henry Bakers. Over the months that followed, more charges were added as the police connected the crimes detailed in his confession with existing murder dockets. The final charge sheet listed 10 counts of murder and five of sodomy.

Both Dr. Micki Pistorius and Prof. Tuviah Zabow testified that serial killers in general and Wilken in particular cannot be rehabilitated. At least once during the trial, while Dr. Pistorius was testifying, Wilken asked to be excused to go to the bathroom. On his way he indicated to Sgt. Norsworthy that he was going to masturbate.

Bongani Mfeka

Samuel Bongani Mfeka was arrested on September 8, 1996, in KwaZulu Natal on a rape charge. While in custody Samuel pointed out six areas where the bodies of women who had been raped and strangled were hidden.
The first murder dates to 1993 following the discovery of a body in Carletonville. Another body was found in the veld in Vrede in November, 1994. The four other bodies have since been found in the Kranskop area. The last body found on September 8, 1996, was in an advanced state of decomposition. According to a police source, four of the bodies were found within easy distance of the suspect’s house in a rural area in KwaZulu Natal.
A police spokesman announced that Mfeka was also being questioned in relation to the 15 bodies attributed to the “Nasrec Strangler”. Although he has not been officially charged with the killings, they have spotted similarities between both killers. Detectives are also searching for another man who may have been an accomplice of the suspect. He too is wanted for questioning in connection with the Nasrec murders.

Norman Hobkirk

(From the court document)

1. All three victims had had their trousers and underpants removed and were left lying half-naked from the waist down.

2. All three victims had multiple injuries, way in excess of that which would be necessary to kill a person.

3. There had been actual physical contact between each victim and the aggressor.

4. All three victims were killed with a sharp instrument.

5. The victims had not apparently been robbed.

6. There were none of the usually apparent motives, such as anger, jealousy, greed and so on.

7. The victims were not in a position to put up much resistance. In the case of the first two the blood alcohol test, conducted as a result of the post-mortem examination, showed that they were under the influence of alcohol to a considerable extent at the time that they were killed. The third deceased was a frail elderly man.

8. The attacks took place in a highly localised area in Bertrams, Johannesburg, within a radius of 200 metres of each other.

9. The victims were all male.

10. In the last two cases the bodies of the victims had been burned after they had been killed. The killings bore the hallmarks of what is colloquially known as “a serial killer”. With regard to charge 1 the evidence of the state may be summarised as follows:

11. There was the testimony of the eyewitness Matilda Stigling, She was about 11 or 1 2 years old at the time that deceased 1 was killed. She had known the accused since she was 4 years old. They had lived in the same street in Bertrams. They were related to each other by marriage. On the late afternoon or early evening of 28 November 1992 she had been walking towards the Maurice Freeman Recreation Centre on her way to the shops. On her way she saw the accused attacking the first deceased with a brick and then grab him and attack him further. She then ran away. She had recognised the first deceased having seen him quite often in the area for some ten days prior to the incident. She told her mother about the incident upon arriving home. What she had seen had not been reported to the police because her mother did not want to get involved. 

These are not robberies gone bad or accidents, these are some very brutal killings. Why are they on a list for possible parole? It is scary that anyone in the same government that decided to put them on the list might have a say as to whether or not they get parole.

 

  1. Unbelievable.
    Very informative though. I think you touched on all key points and concerns we all have and that the courts and parole systems SHOULD HAVE. I don’t know where this empathy for criminals comes from, and it is a legal system, you think they would have better recordkeeping and red flags. If surviving family members are not aware of or are not informed to give testimony at parole hearings, some killer could possibly walk. I will pray and pray that never happens ever again. I am not aware of parole procedures in South Africa, but I hope the ANC gov’t has measures in place to prevent this travesty. Sorry for rambling, I hope that I made sense ;). –John

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