22/04/2008 22:31 - (SA)
Grahamstown - An elderly woman told the High Court here on Tuesday how robbers broke into her house and assaulted her, then killed her partner.
On trial before Judge Johan Froneman, and charged with murder and housebreaking with intent to rob and robbery with aggravating circumstances, are Roro Mntwaphi, 41, of Xolora township, and Mbulelo Kula, 25 of Mlungisi township in Stutterheim.
They both pleaded not guilty to the murder of Stephanus Jacobus Williams, 60, and the assault and robbery of his partner Thelma Lily Petzer, 68, at their house in Stutterheim, on May 27 last year.
The pair also pleaded not guilty to the unlawful possession of a firearm.
They allegedly attacked the elderly couple after breaking into their house in the early evening.
Tried to bite off her rings
According to the charge sheet Williams was attacked outside the house and died as a "result of multiple blows to the head with a blunt object".
Petzer said she was badly assaulted by one of the accused as he tried to bite her rings off her finger, steal her watch and get the PIN for her bank card. She was tied up and kicked one of her assailants.
"He asked the other accused to bring him a knife so he could slit my throat. Then, suddenly they left. I was bleeding from my head and mouth. My arms were black and blue from bruising."
Petzer ran across the road and got help from her neighbours who called the police and her son.
When the police arrived she gave them a description of the clothes the men were wearing.
"Then they (the police) told me Stephanus had passed on, and I said I wanted to see him."
At this point, Petzer broke down and cried as the prosecutor and her family tried to comfort her. The court was adjourned.
The trial continues.