A South African man pleaded guilty Thursday to killing his girlfriend and her son after learning that she had aborted her unborn baby.
News 24 reports Mogamat Fortuin, of Roodewal, South Africa, admitted to murdering Melvina Adler and her 10-year-old son, Jovante, with a hammer in his home on Nov. 8, 2020.
Fortuin said he was “shocked and aggrieved” and “very emotionally affected” when he learned that Melvina had been pregnant and aborted her unborn baby, according to the court.
On Nov. 8, he said he and she both had been drinking and they got into an argument about the abortion.
“When the argument got heated, I took a hammer out of the toolbox [and] hit her on the head,” Fortuin told the court.
According to authorities, Jovante tried to stand between Fortuin and his mother to protect her, but Fortuin hit him on the head with the hammer and killed him.
After killing the mother and son, Fortuin said he saw “no reason” to continue living, so he poured gasoline all around the room and planned to light it on fire to kill himself. However, authorities said he lost consciousness before he did, and he woke up to the police arresting him.
Fortuin and Adler had an abusive relationship. According to authorities, five days before the murder, Fortuin abused his girlfriend by slamming her head into a metal fence.
He pleaded guilty to murder and other charges Thursday in Worcester Circuit Court, according to the local news.
Abortion and domestic violence frequently are connected. A 2012 study in the “Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health” found that women who seek abortions are seven times more likely to be abused than women who do not.
Another 2010 study similarly found a strong link between abortion and abuse against women who seek them. The researchers said the results show a need for abuse screening at abortion facilities and interventions. However, evidence suggests many abortion facilities do not screen for abuse or report suspected abuse to authorities.