Trio jailed for pelting cops with stones

By Judith Sibanda 

Three Jambesi villagers were slapped with a one-year prison sentence each for stoning two police officers who were trying to arrest them.

This was recently heard in court when the three, Brandon Ncube (24) Talent Ncube (25) and Bhekinkosi Sithole (20) all from Chief Shana’s jurisdiction appeared before Victoria Falls resident magistrate Lindiwe Maphosa facing charges of assaulting a peace officer.

They all pleaded guilty.

Facts presented in court alleged that on February 8 and at Jambesi business the three were caught by police officers Soames Nkala and Benjamin Kamcheka assaulting an unnamed person and when they tried to stop them they pelted the cops with stones.  

The police officers, seeing that they were at risk, ran to their Jambesi police base with the three in hot pursuit.

Upon arrival at the station, the three continued throwing stones towards the charge office prompting other police officers at the station to fire two warning shots.

The three were later arrested.

Asked by the magistrate why they had committed the offence, the three said they had spent their day drinking beer.

“I had taken lots of beer on that day, but I am asking the courts to be lenient with me as l am looking after my disabled grandmother,” Brandon said in mitigation.

“I was drunk, but I would like to plead with the courts to pardon me as my wife is pregnant and I need to assist her with the preparation,” Talent also added to his mitigation.

Bhekinkosi pleaded for a lighter sentence saying he was the only one looking after his mother’s livestock.

However, Maphosa said the trio’s conduct on the day aggravated the case although they were the first offenders.

“Although this court finds it befitting to impose a custodial sentence that will ensure that they do not stay long in prison as rehabilitation considering that they were intoxicated,” she said.

“Accused persons behaved in a manner that spells out a disregard of the rule of law therefore it is the duty of court to ensure that the accused persons realize that such conduct is unacceptable because not only did they resist arrest by throwing stones, they further chased the police officers still hurling stones up to their workstation.

“I therefore sentence each accused person 15 months imprisonment of which three months imprisonment is suspended for five years on condition that each does not commit any offence.” 

She said the sentence imposed will not only restore dignity at the Jambesi area, but also the community’s confidence in the criminal justice system.

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