Blood spatter expert gives damning evidence against Van Breda

12 September 2017 - 14:59 By Tanya Farber
EXPRESSIONLESS Murder-accused Henri van Breda listens to blood splatter expert Captain Marius Joubert giving evidence at his trial in the Cape Town  High Court.
EXPRESSIONLESS Murder-accused Henri van Breda listens to blood splatter expert Captain Marius Joubert giving evidence at his trial in the Cape Town High Court.
Image: Jaco Marais/Gallo Images

Nine pieces of damning evidence were detailed by a blood spatter expert in the Henri van Breda triple-axe murder trial on Tuesday. Captain Marius Joubert‚ testifying for the state‚ gave details of how his analysis and findings were inconsistent with Henri's plea statement in which he pleaded not guilty to the murder of his parents and brother‚ and the attempted murder of his sister.

1. Van Breda’s plea statement said he was on the loo‚ heard sounds‚ and then “opened the bathroom door slighty and saw someone in the dark hitting his brother Rudi van Breda. However‚ says Joubert‚ exposure to blood on Henri would have been “minimal” in that case. So‚ that does not explain the blood found on his clothing.

2.In his plea statement‚ he claims he moved from the bathroom to the bedroom where his father Martin had turned the light on. He said from the doorway he saw his father and an attacker in a balaclava engaged in a tackle while the bloody events were unfolding. However‚ says Joubert‚ “the blood stains observed and documented on Henri van Breda’s grey shorts and white socks place Henri in close proximity” to both Rudi and Martin when force was applied and blood came out.

3. A grey duvet was found by the bathroom door and had‚ according to Joubert‚ still been on the bed during the violent attacks in the bedroom. According to Joubert‚ Van Breda’s statement made no attempt to explain how the duvet ended up there.

4. Van Breda’s statement detailed how Rudi was “just lying on the bed” – incapacitated by the attacks he had endured. How‚ then‚ did he end up by the bathroom door? Joubert says there is no explanation for this in the plea statement.

5. Joubert says it is clear from the blood patterns that Martin entered his sons’ room from the left and was then taken by surprise by an attack from the right – an attack so sudden he had no time to respond as he was violently injured from behind. This‚ says Joubert‚ is inconsistent with Van Breda’s plea statement where he details watching his father tackling the alleged attacker who then struck back with the axe.

6. Joubert says the evidence suggests someone had tried to wash blood off objects in the shower‚ but the plea statement doesn’t place anybody in the shower at any time – neither Van Breda himself or the alleged attacker who was described as fleeing the incident.

7. Blood stain patterns from the axe do not support Van Breda’s version of the axe being thrown‚ says Joubert. Instead‚ the pattern is consistent with one that has been made by an object “under control of the handler”.

8. The flow pattern of the blood on the accused’s chest does not support his version of events of the scuffle between him and the alleged attacker in a balaclava. According to Joubert‚ it is evidenced from how the blood dried that his upper body was not moving (as it would in a scuffle) when the cuts were sustained.

9. Blood was found on the bathroom floor but there is no explanation in the plea statement of how it got there.

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