NEWS
06/06/2018 07:07 SAST | Updated 06/06/2018 07:07 SAST

Jason Rohde Murdered His Wife To Shut Her Up, Prosecutor Charges

The State put it to murder accused Jason Rohde that he had smothered his wife Susan in an attempt to get her to "shut up" and then staged her suicide.

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The State put it to murder accused Jason Rohde that he had smothered his wife Susan in an attempt to get her to "shut up" and then staged her suicide.

On the final day of Rohde's cross-examination in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday, State advocate Louis Van Niekerk grilled him about an argument he had with his wife the night before her death, regarding his infidelity.

"Based on the facts, you didn't go to sleep that night. You continued arguing and the only way to shut her up was by smothering her with a cushion," Van Niekerk said.

"When you realised that she was lifeless, you staged her suicide."

Rohde stuck to his story and responded: "With all my faults, I am not a killer."

Rohde previously testified that the argument arose after Susan caught him with mistress Jolene Alterskye in her hotel room at Spier wine estate, Stellenbosch in July 2016.

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The accused and his wife then argued all the way back to their hotel room before Rohde ended the argument by going to bed.

Van Niekerk noted that eye makeup was found on Susan's body. He said this was suspicious because a woman who always looked "radiant" would have removed her makeup as part of her beauty regimen.

On their way from Alterskye's room, Susan fell into a bush and grazed her toe and eyebrow. Her blood was found on their bed sheets.

Van Niekerk also found it strange that Susan had gone to bed without treating her wounds.

He pointed out that Rohde's blood was also discovered on the bed sheets.

"Why was your blood on the sheets? Did you injure yourself?" asked Van Niekerk.

Rohde responded that he was examined after Susan's body was found and that no injuries were detected.

"The blood on the sheets as described by the pathologist was miniscule," he said.

Rohde's advocate Graham Van der Spuy, declined to proceed with re-examination.

Judge Gayaat Salie-Hlophe asked Rohde about his extra-marital affair with co-worker Jolene Alterskye.

"After Susan's suicide, Jolene sent me condolences and we could not continue with our relationship under these circumstances," Rohde said.

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He added that the decision to end the relationship was mutual.

The property mogul is accused of murdering his wife while they were at a Sotheby's conference, and of defeating the ends of justice by staging her suicide.

She was found hanging from a hook on their hotel bathroom door.

Proceedings are expected to resume when forensic pathologist Dr Reggie Perumal takes the stand on Wednesday.

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