Murder of a magistrate: Woman sentenced to 26 years

1 month ago

A 20-year-old woman will serve the next 26 years of her life in prison for the murder of a magistrate.

According to the police, Cassidy Hartzenberg entered into a plea and sentence agreement in terms of Section 105A of Act 51 of 1977, and on Friday, the Cape Town division of the High Court sentenced her.

ALSO READ: Teen arrested for murder of slain magistrate – Romay van Rooyen

“The joint efforts by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) and National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) ensured that Cassidy Hartzenberg (20) is serving a long time behind bars,” police said.

The sentencing

The court imposed the sentence as follows:

• Count one: Murder, 20 years’ imprisonment.

• Count two: Theft of motor vehicle, six years’ imprisonment. The court ordered that count two run concurrently with count one.

Effectively, Hartzenberg will serve 20 years’ direct imprisonment.

Magistrate strangled, found at home

“This emanates from 10 September 2022, when the body of Miss Romay Van Rooyen, was discovered at her home in Muizenberg and it was established that she was strangled.”

A relative discovered the 50-year-old’s body.

“Van Rooyen was employed by the Department of Justice as a magistrate in Vredenburg. It was also established that her vehicle went missing.

“Investigation by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation led to recovery of the deceased’s vehicle in Mitchell’s Plain, which was followed by the arrest of Hartzenberg on 27 September 2022.”

The Hawks Provincial Head in the Western Cape Major General Mathipa Makgato commended the collaboration between the DPCI and NPA in the case.

ALSO READ: Eastern Cape magistrate murdered while travelling with family

Justice ministry saddened

At the time of the incident, the Ministry of Justice and Correctional Services said it was shocked by Van Rooyen’s killing.

NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila also expressed the State’s “shock and deep sense of sadness” after the murder of their former colleague and “dear friend”.

“We would like to express our deepest condolences to her family, friends and colleagues. Her tragic death is a loss to the judiciary and the justice system as a whole,” he said.

ALSO READ: Justice Ministry saddened by murder of Magistrate Romay van Rooyen

Additional reporting by Faizel Patel.