Durban man’s New Year stabbing escalated to murder probe

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DURBAN – A murder docket has been opened into the gruesome death of a Durban man who was initially thought to have taken his own life in the early hours of New Year’s Day.

Desmond Roberts‚ 23‚ had two stab wounds to the chest and his throat was cut at a house in Malvern.

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Police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Thulani Zwane said an inquest docket had initially been opened but the case had subsequently been changed to a murder investigation.

His stepfather‚ Leigh MacDonald‚ said Roberts had been “butchered”.

“I saw his body yesterday morning and I can say without a doubt that he was murdered. There was no way any man could have done that to himself‚” he said.

“The pathologist told us that the cuts on his neck were repeatedly backward and forward. His head was hanging and there was no way someone could do that to himself‚” MacDonald added.

He said the family were trying to piece together the missing hours between the time he returned home from a party and the time he died.

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“Des and them (some friends) had been to a party in Kloof for the night and he apparently got into a fight with someone there. He had gotten into fights with this person before.”

“He called us to tell us that he was home at around 7pm and asked if we could fetch him for breakfast on New Year’s Day. He wanted to spend some time with his daughter‚” he said.

MacDonald said that he was woken in the early hours of the morning after his stepson’s death. “Maybe you could stab yourself once and but never twice. And then cut your own throat. There is no way.”

“There were only four people with him at home that night. One claims to have left and then returned in the 40 minutes in which he killed himself. There was a girl that was with him and cameras show that she never left and she says he did it to himself.”

Zwane said that an investigation into Roberts’ death was ongoing and that no arrests had been made.

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