Car was driving on pavement, Bryce Moon trial hears

The vehicle that hit Mavis Ncube in Sandhurst in 2009 was driving at high speed, and on the pavement, the Randburg Magistrate’s Court heard on Thursday.

“I heard noise, I looked behind us and saw a car travelling at high speed on the pavement … I ran into the road,” said Thandi Sibanda, Ncube’s cousin and the state’s second witness.

The cousins were walking to their nearby workplace when former Bafana Bafana star Bryce Moon’s car allegedly hit Ncube as he failed to negotiate a bend in Sandhurst.

Ncube later died in hospital from head injuries.

Moon was returning home from a party with his then Bafana teammates when the accident occurred.

Sibanda said she and her cousin were walking “a distance from the road” on a gravel path when she heard a noise “like a truck” and saw the car approaching.

She said if she had not run into the street the car “would have knocked us both down”.

When asked by state prosecutor Nadine Nel who the driver of the vehicle was, Sibanda pointed to Moon.

Moon’s attorney, advocate Naren Sangham, referred to a statement made by Sibanda after the accident in which “her description differs to what she is saying in court”.

He read out a sentence from the statement in which Sibanda said her cousin was pushed 50m from the road by the car.

“You told the court today that you did not see what happened to your cousin … So you did see your cousin being hit? And does this mean you were on the road at the time?” Sangham asked.

He later asked her: “So your memory was clearer then than it is now?”

Sibanda appeared to be distressed in court, asking the translator for water, sighing, and looking down or alternatively looking at the wall ahead of her. She then asked to go to the bathroom.

When court resumed, Sangham requested that magistrate Vince Pienaar put on record that Sibanda had, in that time, spoken to her employers in another, vacant, courtroom.

It is against court rules for a witness who is under oath to speak to anyone outside the courtroom.

When asked about the incident she said her employers “had told me not to cry and be strong”.

Moon, dressed in a smart black suit, sat in the dock quietly, at times sighing, shaking his head, and rubbing his face.

The court heard earlier on in the day from the state’s first witness that the three occupants of the car could not walk in a straight line after the accident.

“The three guys got out of the vehicle and they were not going [walking] straight but that could have been because they were just in an accident,” said policeman Lieutenant Colonel Sthembiso Mpungose, who was on duty at the time.

Nel asked Mpungose if he could smell liquor on them.

“I couldn’t, I was not close to them,” Mpungose said.

He was on duty at the time of the accident in June 2009, in Sandton.

He told the court he was called out to a house robbery and was travelling on Katherine Street when he saw a silver-grey Mercedes-Benz drive up behind him, playing “loud music” and “having loud noise”.

He said the car was travelling at such a high speed he thought it might hit his car.

The two cars approached a set of traffic lights. Mpungose said he stopped because the robot was turning red, but the Mercedes-Benz went through the amber light.

The policeman came across the accident scene about 500m from the robot. The car had hit a tree.

The trial will continue on Friday. — Sapa

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Victoria John
Victoria studied journalism, specialising in photojournalism, at Rhodes University from 2004 to 2007. After traveling around the US and a brief stint in the UK she did a year's internship at The Independent on Saturday in Durban. She then worked as a reporter for the South African Press Association for a year before joining the Mail & Guardian as an education reporter in August 2011.

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