An Omaheke region resident who murdered his girlfriend two years ago by stabbing her with a knife and cutting her throat received a prison term of 32 years in the Windhoek High Court yesterday.
Although Hendrik Bock was provoked by the words of his girlfriend, Angela Anab (34), when she told him she had deliberately infected him with a sexually transmitted disease, she did not deserve the cruel death she suffered when Bock first stabbed her with a knife and then slit her throat as if she
was an animal, judge Claudia Claasen said during Bock’s sentencing.
Claasen noted – as had been done on numerous occasions in Namibian courts in recent years – that the senseless killing of women by their romantic partners has become all too regular in Namibia.
Despite repeated statements about unacceptably high levels of gender-based violence and warnings about this that have been made in the country’s courts, “Namibian women are still not safe and are still not spared, not in the bigger towns and not in the rural communities”, Claasen said.
“It is a sad reflection on us that gender-based violence infiltrated even the small farming community of Houtputz in the Gobabis area,” she said.
Houtputz, which is in the Rietfontein area near Tallismanus, north-east of Gobabis, is the place where Bock (53) murdered Anab on 4 September 2018.
Bock, who was working as a farm labourer before his arrest two years ago, admitted guilt on a charge of murder, read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act, near the end of July this year.
He pleaded not guilty to a charge of attempted murder, but after hearing testimony on that count the judge convicted him of assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm.
The second charge flowed from an incident in which Bock hit Anab in the head with the blunt side of an axe during 2016.
Before that incident, and also before the murder of Anab, she and Bock had been drinking alcohol, Claasen recounted.
She said according to testimony heard from Anab’s father, she and Bock had been engaged in an “unhealthy cocktail of alcohol, arguments and physical fights”.
Claasen also recounted that on the day Anab was killed, Bock was angered when she told him she had deliberately infected him with a sexually transmitted disease.
In a drunken rage, Bock stabbed Anab three times in the back. Her father saw the stabbing, which took place under a tree near his house.
When Anab’s father went to a neighbour’s house to contact the police, Bock followed him, but at the neighbouring house he was refused entry.
He then told Anab’s father he was going to finish her off, and returned to the scene where she had been stabbed.
There he slit her throat.
Afterwards, he stayed at the scene until the police arrived.
After the stabbing, Bock could have had time to gather his senses, Claasen said.
“Instead, it became a launching pad for the horror that followed,” she said.
In addition to sentencing Bock to 32 years’ imprisonment on the murder charge, the judge sentenced him to a one-year jail term on the assault charge.
She ordered that the jail term of one year should be served concurrently with the sentence on the murder charge.