I just heard on Jacaranda FM that all charges were withdrawn against the man accused of murdering Anika Smit. This tragic and brutal murder occurred in March this year. Her father, Johan Smit, discovered her naked and mutilated body at their home during the afternoon of 10 March 2010.
A 21-year-old man, Nico Venter, was arrested in connection with her murder. This occurred on 17 May 2010, - 69 days after she was murdered! It is commonly accepted that the killer(s) was acquainted with Anika, as it appears that she willingly let the person(s) in her home. Her father also believes that she must have known her killer(s), as she would never let strangers into the house.
I can recall that the accused, Nico Venter, mentioned that he was willing to cooperate with the police. My logic tells me that this may be the reason why the charges were withdrawn against him. If this is indeed the case, then we can expect another arrest very soon. On the other hand, if there is no arrest soon, then it’s obvious that the police have no leads whatsoever.
Although I can understand that this is a rather sensitive matter, and that the police will not disclose too much details to the media, it really shouldn’t take this long to apprehend the real suspect, - for the odds of catching the real suspect(s) become slimmer as time passes by. In the mean time, there’s a murdering savage on the loose!
Anika murder accused charges withdrawn
All charges were withdrawn in the Pretoria North Magistrates' Court against the man accused of murdering 17-year-old Anika Smit.
In an appearance that lasted less than five minutes, prosecutor Tanya Carstens told Magistrate Barend van Schalkwyk the State was withdrawing all charges. She gave no reasons.
Nico Venter, 21, a project manager at the Carousel Casino in the North West, was accused of murdering Smit, whose body was found at her father's Theresa Park home in Pretoria North in March. She had been raped, her throat was slit and her hands cut off.
Moments after charges were withdrawn, Venter hugged family members outside the court. His lawyer Gerard Pretorius said he did not know why the charges were withdrawn.
Venter's father, Nico Venter senior, said he was relieved, and that the real victims of this case were Smith's family. "They are in our prayers we feel for them. It is six months [since the crime] and we are no closer to having her case solved. We are extremely sorry for the parents."
The picture of Anika on this page was taken from the Facebook Page, established in honour of her memory.