The three ‘suicide theories’ of Susan Rohde’s death

At 10am on Thursday, Jason Rohde will hear his fate. Will he be a free man who can get on with his life, or a man marked for what could be decades incarcerated in the South African prison system?

On Wednesday afternoon, his advocate Graham van der Spuy painted the picture of a shattered man who was not capable of violence. He pointed to testimonies that had unfolded in the lengthy trial in which it was stated, “The accused most certainly does not have the profile of somebody who resorts to violence to resolve a conflict. He is non-confrontational.”

As for his wife Susan, whose death at the luxury Spier Wine Estate sent shock waves across the country in July of 2016, Van der Spuy says there are three theories which explained what happened – all of which include Susan taking her own life.

“My submission is that the deceased died at her own hand and that the evidence overwhelmingly supports that,” he said, adding she may have “consciously committed suicide” when she went into the bathroom and possibly thought to herself, ‘this is it, I can’t take it anymore – I have lost the battle’.

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