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|Born||Barend Hendrik Strydom
15 July 1965
|Criminal penalty||Sentenced to death,
released in 1992
|Date||8 November and
15 November 1988
Pretoria, South Africa
|Weapons||Beretta pistol (9mm)|
Barend Hendrik Strydom, also known as the White Wolf (Afrikaans: Wit Wolf), is a convicted spree killer who was sentenced to death for shooting dead seven black people (and wounding 15 more) in Strijdom Square in Pretoria, South Africa on 15 November 1988. He had earlier killed a woman and injured another in a trial run in preparation for the massacre.
Barend Hendrik Strydom was born 15 July 1965 in the town of Wenen in Natal, South Africa. He joined the South African Police, only to be dismissed after photographing himself with a decapitated motorist at the scene of an automobile accident.
Trial, imprisonment and release
At time of the crime, only 23 years of age, Strydom claimed he was the leader of the White Wolves (Afrikaans: Wit Wolwe). Police later found that this was only a figment of Strydom's imagination. Strydom, who claimed to be a Christian, meditated and prayed for a number of days before committing the crime; he later claimed that God gave him no sign that he must not carry on with his plans.
Strydom was sentenced to death, but the South African government declared a moratorium on capital punishment in 1990. He was released in 1992 by President F W de Klerk as one of 150 political prisoners, including Robert McBride from the opposite end of the political spectrum.
Strydom was granted amnesty by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission after the first democratic elections in 1994.