2028 – That is the next time convicted murderer and rapist Thulakuhle Khumalo will appear in court after he failed in his bid for freedom this week…
Khumalo, who was just 21 when he pleaded guilty to raping two little girls and murdering one of them 20 years ago, appeared before Acting Judge Sharon Marks in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Durban this week for the reconsideration of his sentence.
Khumalo was one of few prisoners in South Africa who were labelled “dangerous” at the time of conviction and sentencing.
He was sentenced to serve 20 years in jail and there was an order that he should return to court later for an assessment to determine whether or not he was eligible to be released back into society.
In a written statement, he said he was a reformed man and, if freed from jail, he would live with relatives in Durban’s Albert Park area, where he would start his own handyman and carpentry business.
But clinical psychologist Mariam Parker, who assessed him in Westville Prison, cautioned that he was a psychopath.
In her ruling on Thursday, Judge Marks referred to her report and her concerns that he had lied to her.
Parker said that, while he seemed, on the surface, to accept responsibility for the crimes, he then “came up with different versions and excuses”.
He had also presented an “immensely shallow account” of the effect of his actions on his victims and their families.
“He continues to be an extremely high risk for reoffending and will likely remain at this level of risk for the remainder of his life,” she said.
Judge Marks said it was clear from the reports that Khumalo was not a changed man and it was in the interests of society that he remained behind bars.
She sent him back to prison for another 10 years and ordered that he should appear again after that for a further reconsideration of his sentence.
According to documents handed in to court, Khumalo raped the first child, who was four, in July 1994 after luring her with sweets. About a year later, he raped the second child, who was six, and then strangled her to death.