8 January 2013

Namibia: Mental Observation of Child Murder Suspect Completed

A FORMER security guard accused of murdering his two children in Windhoek three years ago should hear early next month if he has been found fit to stand his trial.

Jonas Penovanhu Shinana (29) completed a month-long period of psychiatric observation on December 21, Judge Nate Ndauendapo was informed when Shinana made his latest appearance in the High Court in Windhoek yesterday. A report from a State psychiatrist on Shinana's mental state at the time of his alleged offence, and on the question whether he is currently fit to stand his trial, has however not been completed yet, the judge was also told.

Shinana's case was again postponed, with his next court appearance scheduled for February 6, to await the psychiatrist's report.

Shinana is facing two counts of murder.

It is alleged that he murdered his two children, Matheus Shinana (6) and Emilia Naatye Shinana (4), in Windhoek's Wanaheda area between December 23 and 24 2009. The children died after their throats had been cut.

Shinana, who was employed as a security guard at the time, allegedly tried to commit suicide by hanging himself after killing the two children. The suicide attempt failed.

His former defence lawyer asked Judge Ndauendapo in May last year to make an order that Shinana should be observed by a psychiatrist to determine if he is fit to be tried and if he can be held accountable for his alleged crime.

Due to a long waiting list at the psychiatric unit of Windhoek State Hospital, where Shinana was to be observed, his case was postponed repeatedly since May last year, while the requested report from a State psychiatrist was being awaited.

Shinana remains in custody.

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