Psychological Testimony Given at "Heart Eater's" Trial

It was a sight Officer Mlungisi Landule isn't likely to ever forget.

On June 10, 2014, Landule was the first police officer to arrive at a house in Gugulethu township, not far from Cape Town, South Africa, to investigate what appeared to be a domestic assault.  Whle investigating the house, he found 35-year-old Andrew Chimboza in one of the bedrooms eating what appeared to be raw meat while a bloody knife and fork were on the ground next to him.  The body of 62-year-old Mbuyiselo Manona lay nearby.  The body had been stabbed in the neck, chest, and abdomen, and the heart had been removed.   This was the "raw meat" Chimboza was reportedly eating.

Chimboza, a Zimbabwean national who ran a window-tinting business, had apparently quarreled with the dead man over one of Chimboza's former clients who was romantically involved with Manona.  According to Chimboza, it was Manona who attacked him with a knife after which he retaliated by kicking him in the groin, stabbing him in the neck with a fork, and then repeatedly stabbing him in the chest and abdomen with a knife.  Though his attorney denied that his client had eaten the dead man's heart, Chimboza was reportedly "seen fidgeting with a nervous look on his face" while Officer Landule gave his testimony.

One witness, a neighbour who reported having been called to the house because of "trouble," testified to witnessing Chimboza cut out the heart and later biting into the dead man's neck.  The forensic pathologist who conducted the post-mortem reported that Manona's heart was presented to him "in a plastic bag separately in numerous pieces.  Those pieces were not torn pieces. They were cleanly blocked, incised pieces.”   Even the presiding judge, Ashley Binns-Ward, was seen grimacing at times over the graphic testimony presented.

Though Chimboza has pled guilty to the stabbing, police psychologist Major Hayden Knibbs testified that there is little real remorse over Manona's death.  “What happens in these cases is that there is complete mutilation and rage. It is an overkill; more violence than necessary to achieve the goal,” Major  Knibbs testified.  “This behaviour is an attempt to completely obliterate the object....”   He also testified that Chimboza posed a high risk of reoffending with little likelihood of being rehabilitated.  The psychologist was asked to prepare a report for the purpose of sentencing.  

A psychiatrist, Professor Tuviah Zabow, has also prepared a report for the court in which he determined that Chimboza is not mentally ill and is fit to stand trial.  “There is no evidence of psychiatric disorder at present or at the time of the alleged offence," his report stated.  "The behaviour is indicative of an emotional reaction of anger with goal-directed assaultive behaviours towards the object (person) of his anger.” 

Closing arguments are expected this week. 

 

 

 

http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/Psychologist-to-testify-in-heart-eater-case-20150217

 

           

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