Tears flowed at the Western Cape High Court on Monday as the mother of murdered show jumper Meghan Cremer recalled how she was unable to identify her daughter in the mortuary.
After three years, accused Jeremy Sias is on trial for the murder of the 29-year-old woman, whose body was found dumped on a veldjie after she had been robbed and strangled.
Sias pleaded not guilty to the charges of murder, robbery, theft and defeating the ends of justice for the events which led up to Meghan’s death.
According to the indictment, Meghan was accosted by Sias on 3 August 2019 at the Vaderlansche Rietvlei Stables where she rented a cottage.
It is alleged that he attacked her and strangled her to death after stealing various valuables including her laptop, handbag, bank cards and her Toyota Auris.
He later enlisted the help of Charles Daniels and Shiraaj Jaftha to sell the car and they were caught with the vehicle.
The duo were charged separately as there was no evidence linking them to the murder.
In her testimony, mom Gillian Cremer told the court that she had regular contact with her daughter who worked as the manager at Woodstock Bakery and ran a small side business creating specialised horse riding equipment.
Gillian said she had contact with her daughter every day as she lives in Knysna, but on 3 August 2019 her last message did not go through to Meghan’s cellphone.
The next morning, the concerned mom contacted someone on the farm who told her Meghan and her car were missing.
“I called the bakery and they said she had not pitched for work and that is when the red flags were raised because she had never missed a day’s work,” Gillian testified.
“I got a call later from the bakery and was told that one of the drivers had seen her car in Wynberg.”
The worried woman flew to Cape Town the next day and says Meghan’s body was found four days later.
“My son and I went to the mortuary at 8am the next morning to identify the body that was found. We were then shown photographs and we gave them the identifying scars which they checked,” she says.
With tears running down her face, she testified: “We asked them to check her left hand for a ring that she wore since she was 15 because he [the brother] could not identify the face because of all the injuries. They found the ring on her and then it was confirmed.”
The trial continues.