Henry Prinsloo, 26, who caused the death of two policemen when he crashed into their vehicle under the influence of alcohol last year was sentenced in the Roodepoort Magistrates’ Court.
Prinsloo took the stand just before 1pm on Wednesday, where he also apologised to the families of the police officers for the first time, Roodepoort Record reported.
“I went through a tragic time. I suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and panic and anxiety attacks and was […] not capable of apologising earlier,” Prinsloo told the court and families.
“I feel extremely remorseful, and want to give my deepest condolences to the families,” he added.
Before sentencing, Magistrate Delize Smith said she had taken into account that Prinsloo was honest and open with the court and took responsibility for his actions without trying to shift the blame.
Smith said sentencing must be in the interests of society, must be a deterrent and must be retributive.
She added a balance between these elements had to be struck.
Smith told Prinsloo that he was five times over the legal blood alcohol limit, that he was speeding, that he was tired and that he should have known the BMW was a powerful vehicle. Therefore, he took a calculated risk and was grossly negligent.
Smith combined the two culpable homicide counts because they were the result of one accident.
She sentenced Prinsloo to seven years’ imprisonment for culpable homicide and three years for the drunk driving. The sentences are to run concurrently.
Prinsloo was immediately taken to the cells. A police officer handed his belt and tie to his family shortly afterwards.
– Caxton News Service