Tazne van Wyk

PHOTO: Jaco Marais/News24

*WARNING: This story may upset sensitive readers.

  • Tazna van Wyk’s final terrifying moments were described in court on Thursday.
  • She was severely beaten on the head, neck and chest.
  • Her alleged attacker is on trial but cannot be named because he is also accused of horrific crimes against relatives.

The full horror of eight-year-old Tezna van Wyk’s final minutes before she was bludgeoned to death were detailed in the Western Cape High Court on Thursday.

A little girl went missing near her home in Connaught Estate, Elsies River, on 7 February 2020.

After a search by volunteers and police for Tazne and the parolee she was last seen with, her body was found in a storm drain off the N1 near Worcester.

Her left arm was cut off.

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The man accused of her murder faces 27 charges, including multiple counts of rape, sexual assault, incest and desecration of a corpse. He pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him.

All Tazna did was walk a few meters from her parents’ house to the spaza shop across the street when she disappeared.

On Thursday, medical examiner Dr. Ingrid Herbst testified at the trial of the man accused of killing her that the little girl suffered serious injuries to her head, skull, neck and chest.

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She was hit so hard that “what was left of her brain” showed bleeding that had spread from one side of her head to the other.

“Usually that indicates a pretty strong force,” Herbst testified, adding that the chance of surviving such an injury is low.

The hyoid bone in her neck was broken in two places, indicating that she had probably been strangled.

Family members of Tazne van Wyk sit in court

Family members of Tazne van Wyk are seen in court.

Gallo Images PHOTO: Brenton Geach, Gallo Images

She had four ribs broken and her left arm amputated.

She would be in a lot of pain. The neck injury is believed to have been the death knell, with the force of the hands pressing down on him preventing breathing and blood flow.

She could not say whether Tazne had been raped because her body was badly decomposed when she was found.

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“There were maggots in her genital area. We couldn’t tell if she was a man or a woman.”

Specialist human biologist Dr. Louise Friedling was brought in to testify further about Tazna’s bone injuries.

In extremely difficult testimony, she explained that the little girl’s pelvic bones had been forced apart from the floor and inside the pelvis, and the cartilage had split.

This is usually due to being born very young, having intercourse or a bottle, because the only way to split the cartilage is to put pressure on the bladder or vaginal area, she revealed.

The trial continues.

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