The family of a farmer whose body was found near his farm gate in the North West on Saturday, now knows that he was definitely murdered.
Since his death, 67-year-old Fred Jansen van Rensburg’s family has had many more questions than answers about the circumstances of his death.
Capt. Sam Tselanyane, police spokesperson, said earlier that the police are conducting an inquest into Jansen van Rensburg’s death. This investigation would help determine the cause of Fred’s death.
Fred’s daughter-in-law, Suzanne, told RNews that the results of the post-mortem examination have now shown that Fred was indeed murdered.
According to her, the investigation showed that Fred received a blow to the side of his head which led to bleeding on the brain.
RNews sent an inquiry about this to the police and is still waiting for a response.
Fred managed the farm where his body was found. He was supposed to be counting cattle with his farm workers on Saturday morning when they came upon him.
Suzanne hurried to the farm after being informed of his death. Fred’s son, Freddie, was in Mongolia where he works.
“I arrived there and saw my father-in-law lying on the seam of his back outside the gate of his house. I just saw his swollen, blue eye and blood, turned around and called my husband,” she says.
Emergency services were called to the scene and paramedics told Suzanne that they suspected her father-in-law had been dead for more than 12 hours.
From the outset, Fred’s family suspected that foul play might have been involved in his death.
According to Suzanne, her father-in-law’s electric gate was wide open and he was lying about three meters outside the gate with his feet pointing towards the house. One of his stockings was lying by the gate and the slippers he had been wearing were inside the yard. It also lay in the direction of the house.
Fred was found with a headlamp in one hand and the keys to his house, his bakkie and the pickup truck next to him.
His bakkie was parked in the usual place in the yard and his mobile phone was still locked in it.
Suzanne says they later came across a payment slip which shows that Fred was at a petrol station just after 19:00 to buy fuel for his generator. He is believed to have gone home afterwards, as the fuel can was found with the generator.
Fred’s house was open and although nothing was obviously out of place, beer bottles by the lounge sofas caught Suzanne’s attention.
“My father-in-law always sat on a single sofa and my late mother-in-law sat on the double sofa. Next to these two benches stood two beer bottles. However, my father-in-law never drank beer from a bottle, but instead poured it into a glass and stored the rest in the fridge,” she says.
“My late mother-in-law was also painfully neat and my father-in-law persisted with that, so it was strange when we saw that there was mud on the benches.”
Suzanne says, however, that they cannot figure out what led Fred to go to the gate so late, moreover, without any kind of protection.
“If someone had drawn his attention to go to the gate, it would have been someone he knew, otherwise he would have taken a firearm with him,” she says.
However, Fred’s firearm was found in its place in his house.
In addition, drag marks were observed in the ground and the police took prints of the footprints near Fred’s body.
“Over the weekend we were in severe shock because we didn’t know what had happened,” says Suzanne.
Fred’s loved ones have so far been unable to make funeral arrangements, because the post-mortem examination has not yet been completed.
Freddie says he will always remember his father as a man who protected his family at all costs, was the hardest worker, never turned a blind eye, but above all was a proud family man.
“His life revolved around his wife and his children.”
According to Freddie, his father struggled to come to terms with the death of his mother, Antoinette. Antoinette died last year on her birthday at the age of 65.
“We thought he was going to mourn himself to death, and then this happened.”