Life in jail for 'perverse, wicked' baby rapist from St Francis Bay

12 December 2019 - 13:49 By Devon Koen
Mzingisi James Ntshontshi, 50, who had attempted to cover his face during his rape trial, was sentenced to life in prison in the Port Elizabeth high court on Wednesday.
Mzingisi James Ntshontshi, 50, who had attempted to cover his face during his rape trial, was sentenced to life in prison in the Port Elizabeth high court on Wednesday.
Image: EUGENE COETZEE

A 19-month-old toddler required corrective surgery for injuries she sustained at the hands of a middle-aged man: Now, her rapist will pay for it from behind prison bars.

Mzingisi James Ntshontshi, now 50 years old, was on Wednesday jailed for life by Port Elizabeth high court judge Irma Schoeman for the rape on August 12 2018.

The judge described his actions as “abhorrent, wicked and perverse”.

The ordeal had devastating consequences for the toddler, she said.

According to testimony led during the trial, the child's mother, who worked at a bakery in St Francis Bay, had left her in the care of a woman who shared a house with Ntshontshi.

The female carer in turn left the child with him, when she went to buy alcohol at about 7am at a nearby shebeen.

The child was found half-clothed, bloody and bruised in the bushes about 100m away from the house by members of the community at about 4pm that day.

Humansdorp hospital's Dr LM Mabaso, who examined the toddler, told the court that due to the severity of the injuries, she had immediately consulted with a specialist at Dora Nginza Hospital and the little girl had been rushed to Port Elizabeth for corrective surgery. 

Last week, a medical report filed before sentencing described the enduring physical and psychological problems affecting the child. 

The child's mother, 27, also told the court of her guilt. 

She said she had sent her daughter away to live with family members. 

“After it happened I saw her once because I separated myself from her ... when I look at her or when (a relative) sends me a picture of her, then I have the image of when she was raped,” the mother said.

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