Correctional Services to consider reviewing Humphreys’ parole

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November 29, 2016
Correctional Services to consider reviewing Humphreys’ parole

COMING OUT: Jacob Humphreys, 61

Parents fighting parole ask authorities reconsider release of killer taxi driver.

Convicted child killer Jacob Humphreys is not home free yet.

The Department of Correctional Services says it is considering applications to review the former taxi driver’s parole.

Humphreys, 61, from Blackheath, is expected to be released on parole next Friday after serving only four years of his eight-year sentence at Paardeberg Prison in Paarl.

But families of his young victims have asked the parole board to rethink their decision and keep him behind bars.

In August 2010, Humphreys caused the death of 10 school children after he ignored the warning lights at the Buttskop level crossing in Blackheath.

He overtook several cars who were waiting for a train to pass, and his taxi collided with the train.

Two weeks ago the Department confirmed Humphreys would be released after a meeting with the parole board on November 9.

While the department insists they were in contact with the families, the parents say they found out about Humphreys’ release through the media.

Correctional services spokesperson, Carla Williams, confirms they received letters opposing the parole.

“Correctional Services received two applications for the review of Jacob Humphreys’ parole and we are considering these applications,”she says.

“Letters were hand-delivered to the parents of the victims on 16 November 2016 with the exception of those who were not at home (the family was informed telephonically), who moved without leaving a forwarding address and a family that could not be traced,” she added.

Gertie Willemans, whose son JP Willemans was killed, was one of those who was not informed.

“I did not receive any letter because I was not home,” she says.

“If they couldn’t find me at home, they could have called me.

“On November 17, I heard from other people (about Humphreys’ release) and I still know nothing, I am infuriated,” she says.

Meanwhile Rochelle Smith, whose son Reece died in the disaster, says Humphreys is getting away with murder.

“This is very upsetting,” she says.

“We got letters in which I said he should not get parole. After that no one called us or came to our homes.

“When I saw the reports about his release, I was very upset.”

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