College student sentenced to hang for robbery with violence

A college student accused of violently robbing a colleague and his relative of mobiles phone and Sh. 520 while armed with a knife was Monday sentenced to hang by a Nyeri court.

The Nyeri National Polytechnic Student, Gathogo Mwaniki, was sentenced after Senior Resident Magistrate, Ruth Kefa, found him guilty of two counts of robbery with violence on January 10, 2016, within Nyeri town.

In the first count, Gathogo was charged with robbing his colleague, Moses Kagiri, of an LG mobile phone valued for Sh. 9,500 and Sh. 500 in cash.

In count two, the accused was charged with robbing Benjamin Kirugumi, a cousin to Kagiri, of a Nokia mobile phone worth Sh. 8,020 and Sh. 20 in cash.

The victims had during hearing proceeding narrated how the accused in company of four others not in court, robbed them of their valuables on the material day at around 11 pm, near the YMCA junction.

Kagiri told the court that he had gone to pick his cousin (Kirugumi) at the Nyeri lower matatu stage.

He said that since he did not have enough cash to take a cab home, they agreed to walk to his Skuta Estate house, approximately two kilometers away.

The complainant said on reaching the YMCA junction, they met a group of five men standing by the roadside who stopped them and ordered them to hand over whatever they had in their possession.

He said it was the convict who took away their phones and cash as the rest held knives against their stomach asking them to cooperate or else be killed.

Kagiri said that after the incident, they came across some boda boda operator and sought their assistance in tracing police officers on patrol.

He said the suspects were minutes later traced at a nearby pub where he and his cousin were able to positively identify the convict.

In her ruling, the magistrate said the evidence adduced by the complainants placed the accused at the scene of the robbery given that he was also found in possession of the stolen items at the time of arrest.

She added that the complainants did not have a challenge identifying the accused’ physical appearance and the clothes he was wearing, which was well captured in their statements.

Going by the evidence adduced before me, I am satisfied that the crime had all the ingredients of robbery with violence, noted the magistrate.

She added that the court had established beyond reasonable doubt that the accused person together with others used actual violence during the incident.

In mitigation, Mwaniki, said he was remorseful and it was his desire to go back to college and complete his studies.

Source: Kenya News Agency