The widow of murdered Metro police officer Constable Ben Koopman faced her husband’s alleged killer for the first time in court yesterday.
Murder accused Christopher Jantjies, 27, briefly appeared in the Blue Downs Magistrates’ Court.
Jantjies was arrested by the Hawks on Friday in connection with the murder of Koopman in February.
Koopman was leaving his home when he was ambushed by two suspects who shot him and robbed him of his service pistol and radio.
Jantjies cut a lone figure in the dock inside the packed courtroom. Seats in the gallery were filled by Koopman’s family and colleagues.
The State pointed out that Jantjies had “appeared in the court before, using several different names.”
Prosecutors said the state would oppose bail and requested a postponement. The case was postponed to October 19 for a formal bail application.
Outside court, grieving widow Katriena Koopman said she does not hate the man who allegedly killed her husband.
“It’s a relief to know there is someone who police finally arrested. We now have to wait and see what the court decides, but I don’t hate him (Jantjies),” she said.
“He did what he did so he has to take that on himself. We don’t know what (the motive was) so he needs to say what it was about.”
Katriena says her children are still dealing with their father’s tragic death.
“What he (Jantjies) did to my family is unforgettable,” she says.
“The children have friends who keep them busy, but when they’re home at night they miss (their dad),” she says as her eyes fill up with tears.
Katriena says she never doubted her husband’s killers would be arrested.
“I never gave up hope, I left it in God’s hands,” she says.
“The detective came to tell me himself (that the suspect was arrested), I was very relieved.
“He will have to say where the others (suspects) are and why they did it because I know my husband didn’t hurt anyone, he lived for his work and his children.”
The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) spokesperson Lloyd Ramovha said more arrests can be expected soon.