Rape, Burglary Earn Mangochi Man 26 Years in Jail
Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate's court on Wednesday July 14, 2021, convicted and sentenced Joseph Razalo, 20, to 17- and 9-years’ imprisonment with hard labour for rape and burglary respectively.
During court proceedings, Police Prosecutor at Namwera Police, Sergeant Anthony Mchiswe, told the court that the incident happened on the night of March 22, 2021 when Razalo broke into the house of a 21-year-old woman when the owner was fast asleep.
“As he was landing on the floor, he accidentally stepped on a chicken that woke the victim and she shouted for help,” explained Mchiswe.
Prosecutor Mchiswe added: “surprisingly instead of escaping, the accused charged towards the victim and raped her while covering her mouth with his own hands.”
He said the matter was reported to Masuku Police Unit where a medical report form was issued and results from Masuku Health Centre confirmed that she was raped.
Appearing in court the accused person pleaded not guilty to both charges leveled against him and state paraded three witnesses who testified against him.
In mitigation, Razalo asked for leniency saying he is too young to go to prison, but the state prayed for a custodial sentence while reminding the court that Razalo's actions cannot go unpunished and the nature of the offences committed are serious.
When passing judgement, Senior Resident Magistrate Rodrick Michongwe, who found him guilty on both charges, expressed his concern over Razalo's conduct.
He therefore sentenced him to 9 years in prison for the first count of burglary and 17 years’ imprisonment for the second count of rape, but sentences to run concurrently.
Joseph Razalo, hails from Mvero Village, in the area of Traditional Authority Bwananyambi in the same district.