54-YEAR-OLD Joseph Ncube, 54, a former patient at Ingutsheni Hospital in Bulawayo, fatally assaulted his brother after claiming that he possessed goblins that were behind the deaths of four family members, the Bulawayo High Court heard yesterday.
Ncube, from Plumtree, appeared before Justice Martin Makonese facing a murder charge in connection with the killing of his brother, Madodana Ncube, 64.
Justice Makonese ruled that Joseph committed the murder while suffering from a mental illness and as such he could not be held legally responsible for the crime.
The judge said he suffered from auditory hallucinations and delusion due to chronic schizophrenia – a mental disorder often characterised by abnormal social behaviour and failure to recognise what is real.
Prosecuting, Nokuthabo Ngwenya said on January 10 last year shortly after 9PM, Joseph went to his late brother's homestead and stopped at the gate.
He accused his brother of bewitching him, telling him that he and his wife were breeding goblins that were responsible for the deaths of four family members, Ngwenya said.
The court was told that Madodana stormed out of his bedroom and found his younger brother gone.
"Madodana was angered by Joseph's actions and took his whip and a torch before following his younger brother on a bicycle," said Ngwenya.
When he caught up with Joseph, he confronted him and demanded an explanation as to why he was accusing him of witchcraft.
The two brothers started fighting leaving Madodana severely injured causing Joseph to flee.
Villagers found an injured Madodana the following morning and they took him to St Annes Brunapeg Hospital.
He was further referred to United Bulawayo Hospitals where he died on January 17.
"My client suffered from hallucinations when he committed the crime and a report by a psychiatrist from Ingutsheni Hospital also confirmed that he was a mental patient. On the day he committed the crime he had run out of medication," said Joseph's lawyer, Felicity Ndou.