High Court set to deal with murder – or suicide – riddle

High Court set to deal with murder – or suicide – riddle

A GROOTFONTEIN resident charged with murder after a colleague and friend was shot dead in his flat at the northern town is set to be tried in the High Court.

Dewald Ludeke (28) was informed on Monday last week that the Prosecutor General had decided that the case should be heard by the High Court. He was accused of murder after the death of the 27-year-old Elmar Kotze in Ludeke’s flat in the early morning hours of October 2 2002.Ludeke heard what the PG had decided about the case during an appearance in the Grootfontein Magistrate’s Court.He is now scheduled to make a first appearance in the High Court in Windhoek for a pre-trial hearing on September 14.Ludeke was also informed that he is set to go on trial on a charge of murder, alternatively failing to safeguard a firearm, or, as a second alternative to the murder charge, handling a firearm while under the influence of alcohol.Kotze died after he was shot in the head where he was seated on a couch in Ludeke’s flat, allegedly after a party had taken place at the apartment.According to the prosecution’s summary of the case against him – which was also disclosed to Ludeke last week – it is charged that both he and Kotze were under the influence of liquor when Ludeke went to fetch his 9mm pistol and, upon his return, shot Kotze in the head.Initially it was claimed that Kotze had committed suicide.His family would not accept such a theory of the events, though, and pressured the Police into conducting a more thorough investigation of the shooting, which led to Ludeke being arrested and charged five days after the incident.The Police investigation into the circumstances of Kotze’s death was still continuing in August last year, when a decision that more forensic examinations had to be done led to his remains being exhumed, to be promptly reburied again, from a Grootfontein cemetery.Ludeke, who has already pleaded not guilty to both the murder charge and the alternative charges, remains free on bail.He was accused of murder after the death of the 27-year-old Elmar Kotze in Ludeke’s flat in the early morning hours of October 2 2002.Ludeke heard what the PG had decided about the case during an appearance in the Grootfontein Magistrate’s Court.He is now scheduled to make a first appearance in the High Court in Windhoek for a pre-trial hearing on September 14.Ludeke was also informed that he is set to go on trial on a charge of murder, alternatively failing to safeguard a firearm, or, as a second alternative to the murder charge, handling a firearm while under the influence of alcohol.Kotze died after he was shot in the head where he was seated on a couch in Ludeke’s flat, allegedly after a party had taken place at the apartment.According to the prosecution’s summary of the case against him – which was also disclosed to Ludeke last week – it is charged that both he and Kotze were under the influence of liquor when Ludeke went to fetch his 9mm pistol and, upon his return, shot Kotze in the head.Initially it was claimed that Kotze had committed suicide.His family would not accept such a theory of the events, though, and pressured the Police into conducting a more thorough investigation of the shooting, which led to Ludeke being arrested and charged five days after the incident.The Police investigation into the circumstances of Kotze’s death was still continuing in August last year, when a decision that more forensic examinations had to be done led to his remains being exhumed, to be promptly reburied again, from a Grootfontein cemetery.Ludeke, who has already pleaded not guilty to both the murder charge and the alternative charges, remains free on bail.

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