Windhoek — The court-ordered psychiatric report by a State psychiatrist to determine whether Zenobia Seas, accused of killing her biological daughter in Swakopmund, is fit to stand trial is ready and will be submitted to court at her pre-trial hearing on July 19.
This was revealed by deputy prosecutor-general, Advocate Antonia Verhoef, during a scheduled court hearing on the status of Seas' mental health to High Court Judge Christi Liebenberg.
The judge then remanded the matter to this week to allow the State and the defence time to study the reports and decide whether to accept or dispute the findings of the psychiatrists.
Judge Liebenberg ordered that Seas be assessed by a private psychiatrist, Reinhardt Sieberhagen, to determine her ability to understand court proceedings and her ability to put up a proper defence. She must also be examined by a State psychiatrist to determine whether she was able to appreciate the wrongfulness of her actions when she committed the offence, the judge ordered.
Sieberhagen already conducted his assessment and concluded she was fit to stand trial and follow the court proceedings.
Seas allegedly suffocated three-year old Ava Owoses on a beach near Mile 108 on September 26, 2016 before trying to commit suicide by burning herself and the toddler's body in her car. She was discovered after her mobile phone was tracked to the scene.
She is facing a charge of murder, read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act and defeating or obstructing or attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice.
According to the indictment, Seas picked up her daughter from a day care facility in Mondesa in Swakopmund and drove with her to the area of Blare in Henties Bay, where she allegedly killed the child by smothering or suffocating her.
The toddler died on the scene due asphyxia. She then contacted various witnesses informing them that she killed the deceased, the indictment read. It is further stated that Seas then "set alight the deceased's blanket and attempted to set alight the motor vehicle with the deceased inside, in an attempt to frustrate or interfere with police investigations, conceal the death of the deceased and protect herself from being prosecuted for the crime .