A widow has won a damages claim, eight years after a family friend’s boerboel killed her husband. A TimesLIVE report notes that a full Bench at the Bloemfontein High Court overturned an earlier judgment which found that David van Deventer’s death in 2011 was due to natural causes.

Van Deventer died in hospital 10 days after he was attacked by his friend Hennie Botha’s dog, Capone. The attack happened when Van Deventer arrived at Botha’s smallholding in Bainsvlei to collect his son. Judge Johann Daffue said there were two versions of what happened next, but Van Deventer ended up in hospital bleeding from several dog bites.

Even though he had cirrhosis and high blood pressure, ‘the fact remains that he would not have been rushed to hospital ... let alone emergency treatment, was it not for the wounds sustained,’ he said.

Daffue said Botha must pay damages to Van Deventer’s widow, Adriana, as well as her court costs. Another case will be needed to the damages claim.

According to the law, said Daffue, ‘an owner of a domesticated animal such as the dog in this case is liable for damage caused by the animal, without requiring proof of negligence’.

Full TimesLIVE report