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It’s death sentence for two who gang-raped their former teacher for hours

The Court of Appeal in Nyeri has upheld death sentences of two men who robbed and gang-raped their former teacher in Tigania East sub-county, Meru County.

John Munene Gitiye and John Mutuma Rukunga faced charges of robbery with violence and rape.

They had been handed death sentence for robbery and 20 years in jail for rape by a High Court in Meru on November 28, 2013 but felt aggrieved and appealed the decision.

The court heard that on November 3, 2009 in Tigania the two robbed the complainant (name withheld) two mobile phones, shoes and clothes all valued at Sh6,500 and cash Sh600.

They also gang-raped her, jointly with others not before the court.

CRUDE WEAPONS

The gang of six members was armed with crude weapons namely a rifle and pangas, the court heard.

The court found that Gitiye and Rukunga were the perpetrators of the rape ordeal together with another person, since they were positively identified by the victim.

She said she knew Gitiye very well since he was her former teacher since childhood.

“I have known you since childhood. I taught you in school. I saw your face when you were on the act. I could see you from the torch light of the person who was standing next to us. The torch light was illuminating us. I did not imagine that it was you,” she told the court.

She said the gang of six members stormed into her home at 4am.

The investigating police officers managed to incriminate the two who were successfully prosecuted.

“I was asleep when robbers invaded my home. I came to know them later. They knocked my door and demanded that I open the door but I refused. My son who was sleeping in another house screamed and the robbers fired a gun and I opened the door fearing they had shot my son dead,” she told the court.

RAPED UNTIL MORNING

She narrated that she was raped by three men in turns until morning. She named the third rapist as Kirinyu.

She reported the matter at Tigania Police Station and later sought treatment at Miathene District Hospital.

Police also went to her home and collected a spent bullet cartridge.

Gitiye was arrested at his hiding place in the village and one of the stolen mobile phones recovered from his pockets while Rukunga was arrested at Muthara market.

The teacher said the suspects were her neighbours and had known them since childhood since she taught them in school.

She denied framing the appellants into the charges and bribing the local chief.

WORE SON’S SHOES

The robbers also wore his son’s shoes and left theirs behind.

In his defense, Gitiye said the mobile phone was planted on him by the police officer and the local chief and framed him because he had refused to sign for the transfer of his land to go to his father’s brother.

Rukunga admitted that he was the woman’s neighbour.

He said when the robbery took place, he was in Rwanda area and that the person in whose company he was died a long time ago.

While delivering the judgement, Justice Phillip Waki, Alnashir Visram and GBM Kariuki said the court was satisfied that there was no mistake as to the identity of both appellants and that there was no error in their recognition

“We are fortified by the fact that the evidence of recognition as opposed to identification was more reliable. It was also corroborated by the evidence and reinforced by the doctrine of recent possession,” they said.