“We love you so much,” Rob Packham’s daughters told him as he blew kisses and a police officer led him away in the Western Cape High Court on Thursday
Nicola and Kerry had both been in court, expecting to hear whether their dad would walk free or be put behind bars for killing their mother Gill and obstructing justice.
But it emerged that Judge Elize Steyn was not yet ready to deliver her judgment and postponed it until Monday.
As Packham was taken into custody, he told his daughters that he would contact them.
He has pleaded not guilty to the murder of his wife and misleading police in their investigation.
Detectives had swept their home in Riesling Road for clues following Packham’s arrest, after his wife’s charred remains were found on 22 February 2018, in the boot of her burnt-out car at the Diep River train station in Cape Town.
He previously told the court that he had frantically searched for his wife that day and that it was a very dark and emotional time.
However, he struggled to accept two versions presented to him of how his school administrator wife Gill was murdered in Cape Town.
The first version that prosecutor Susan Galloway put to him while on the stand involved an unidentified attacker who killed Gill, ostensibly in a hijacking. He at first said it was a possibility but did not want to speculate as he simply didn’t know.
The second version was that he found himself in a corner because of his affair and killed his wife – making up cover stories along the way, getting rid of evidence, and setting it up to look like a hijacking. Packham categorically denied this.
Defence advocate Craig Webster argued that the evidence of the two eyewitnesses who identified Packham at critical moments should not carry any weight.
He further argued that Packham had made extensive admissions after pleading not guilty, including affidavits pertaining to his movements on the day of this wife’s murder. His version of his whereabouts was materially corroborated by his cellphone data, Webster said.
He also criticised the police’s investigation of the murder, saying the case was built around his client as the probe focused on Packham from the outset.