WARNING: This story contains graphic details
While Nicholas Ninow claimed that he acted impulsively when the seven-year-old girl he said he raped walked into the bathroom of a Dros restaurant, the young girl testified in court that he followed her into the bathroom, indicating that his actions were premeditated
The child, who testified in camera and via an intermediary room in the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Wednesday, detailed a different sequence of events to the one Ninow detailed in his plea explanation.
It was this material difference that led to the State to reject Ninow’s plea explanation, which meant that the matter would go to trial.
The girl’s testimony was held in camera (behind closed doors), meaning that the media were not allowed to be present, but National Prosecuting Authority’s spokesperson Phindi Louw Mjonondwane said the victim did well to rebut Ninow’s version.
“We wish to commend the child. She did very well in her testimony, to try and rebut the version that was placed before court by the accused in his plea explanation,” Louw Mjonondwane said.
“The accused in his version said that the child found him in the bathroom, so it was important for the State to call the child to testify specifically about the sequence of events. That in fact, the accused person followed the child to the bathroom.”
“Intention to harm”
Louw Mjonondwane said the State called the victim to testify to prove to the court that by following the victim, Ninow already had the intention to harm her.
News24 previously reported that in his plea explanation, which Legal Aid attorney Herman Alberts read out, the self-confessed rapist went to the women’s bathroom to take a drug called methcathinone (also known as CAT), hoping he would not get caught.
He then lowered his pants to create the impression that he was urinating while snorting more of the drug that he was caught with when he was arrested on 22 September 2018, the same day when the rape occurred.
“While I was busy taking the CAT, the complainant pushed open the door,” Ninow said in the plea explanation.
The complainant indicated that she wanted to urinate, and I got off the toilet, pulled her pants down and put her on the toilet.
“In that moment, I acted impulsively, and took my penis and forced it into the complainant’s mouth. Thereafter, I penetrated the complainant’s vagina with my finger.”
Ninow said he quickly realised what he was doing was wrong and stopped.
Moments later, the victim’s mother and others tried gaining access to the bathroom. Ninow resisted their attempts to enter the bathroom, but eventually let the door open and fled into the men’s bathroom.
“During my attempts to evade capture, I realised that I still had the complainant’s underwear in my hand and threw it into the toilet bowl and flushed it away,” Ninow added.
Nino pleaded guilty to two counts of rape which took place in the Dros restaurant in Silverton, Pretoria, he also admitted guilt for being in possession of an illegal substance and defeating the ends of justice.
He pleaded not guilty to assault.
The victim’s mother also testified through closed circuit television on Wednesday, telling the court that “no parent should ever see what I witnessed”.
After finding her daughter in the bathroom with Ninow, the mother testified that she had seen him use her daughter’s clothes to clean his penis.
She added that Ninow had her daughter’s tights and underwear. She also witnessed how Ninow flushed her underwear down the toilet.
“I asked him why he flushed my child’s clothes. He never responded,” she said.
The mother, whose voice trembled at times during her testimony, said she has been attending counselling with her daughter to try and heal.
“There is no parent who should see what I have witnessed. What I have seen has made me very emotional.”
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