Nathaniel Julies’ pre-trial returns to court, family urged to exercise patience

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The trial into the murder of slain teenager Nathaniel Julies will return to court for pre-trial on the 3rd of June. The pre-trial conference that was set down for today at the High Court sitting at the Palm Ridge Magistrates was postponed.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has urged the Julies family to be patient as the trial into their son’s death gets underway.

The 16-year-old boy with Down Syndrome was shot dead allegedly by the police in Eldorado Park in August 2020.

Three police officers are charged with the murder of Nathaniel Julies in 2020. Simon Scorpion Ndyalvana, Caylene Whiteboy and Vorster Netshiongolo are charged with murder, defeating the ends of justice, possession of prohibited ammunition and accessory to murder.

After long postponements, the trial finally began last October. However, the case hit a snag following the unforeseen death of presiding Judge Ramarumo Monamo earlier this year.

NPA Spokesperson Phindi Mjondonwane says the court will still have to make findings about the credibility of witnesses, and a record of proceedings alone will be insufficient.

Mjondowane says the judge will have their own observations about witnesses and their demeanour so that the trial starts can start afresh for the benefit of both victim and accused.”

More details of death

During proceedings at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court in October last year, more details of how the teenager was shot and killed emerged.

The state’s second witness, SAPS officer Mandla Sithole, was at the scene with four of his colleagues, two of whom stand accused of murder.

State witness Sithole was a student constable at the time. He wanted to buy food and asked two officers for a lift in a police van.

The van was driven by accused two, Simon Ndyalvane. He says, Ndyalvane told him that they should fetch the accused one, Caylene Whiteboy on their way.

He testified that, after picking her up, they drove past a shop when Whiteboy took out a shotgun and fired several shots at a group of boys. He said Ndyalvane also fired shots.

They then went to buy food at Southgate Mall and on their return, parked the police van next to a stationary truck they suspected was carrying stolen car parts. And that’s where Julies was allegedly shot.

“Accused one took out a shotgun, we were eating in the car so she was in front of me. The window of the driver, accused 2 was facing the direction of the truck. From his position, he could see the truck. And then I just heard a loud bang.”

Sithole told the court the two officers then rushed toward Julies.

“After the bang accused two jumped out of the vehicle and ran towards the boy who was lying down. He got there and picked the boy up and the constable went to the back and opened the van at the back, then accused two put the boy inside the state vehicle.”

More details of the killing in the report below: 

A post-mortem last year found a staggering 189 pellets in Julies’ lifeless body. The disturbing information led to the teenager’s mother breaking down in court after expressing shock and dismay at the news.

More details in the report below: 

-Additional reporting by Horisani Sithole