A former police officer who was stationed at Chiredzi Central Police Station was last week slapped with a 33-year jail term by Chiredzi Regional Magistrate Judith Zuyu after being found guilty on three counts of armed robbery.
Magistrate Zuyu said there was enough evidence to prove that the accused Taurai Mujatiwa, 33, was guilty.
Mujatiwa was found guilty on three counts of armed robbery after he stole property worth $63 000 and US$820 and R70 200.
TellZim reports that of the 33-year-long jail term, two years were set aside provided he paid back US$125 for count one, R58 720, and US$788 for count two before May 27, 2021.
The State led by Noel Muranda proved that on March 05 this year, Mujatiwa in the company of Collins Chauke, who is still at large, approached Calisto Jairos Mapikire, who is a taxi driver at N. Richards Wholesalers in Chiredzi asking for his services to Hippo Valley Section 27.
When they got to Chitsanga Hill, the accused strangled the complainant, tightened his hands and legs, covered his face, and discharged a firearm threatening to kill him if he failed to cooperate.
The accused drove off to Triangle and dumped the complainant in a cane field near High Siringa and took his Toyota Fan cargo, US$125.00, a pair of tennis shoes, a belt, and a cellphone. The complainant later managed to reach for help and reported the matter to Triangle Police Station.
On the second count, along Masvingo-Beitbridge highway the following day, Mujatiwa gave Lydia Maphosa a lift and threatened to kill her, and took her Gtel cellphone, $21 000, and a monarch with clothes before dumping her alongside the road and drove off.
The state presented that on March 07, in Zvinonyanya Village, Mwenezi district, the accused in the company of four gang members, approached Nokutula Moyo’s homestead around 03:00hrs and broke into her house before threatening the complainant and his family with a machete.
They requested for safe keys but the complainant refused to give them. The accused harassed and assaulted Moyo’s daughter with open and threatened to chop them into pieces.
They demanded a cellphone and took a safe with US$770, P250, R70 200, and property worthy S$16 310.
The accused was later arrested at a police roadblock in Chivi, where he refused to cooperate with the police before running away, leaving the stolen car behind.
The police searched in his car and found a machete with dry bloodstains, a screwdriver and discovered that the vehicle had been stolen.