Mombasa, KENYA: Two men accused of robbing a remandee while in a court cell have been sentenced to death by a Mombasa court, after they were found guilty of robbery with violence.
Dickson Omondi and Dennis Onyango were accused of jointly robbing off Samson Odhiambo Ochieng his mobile phone, make Itel worth sh.10,000 and cash sh.400.
“This is a very rare and interesting case where it is alleged that an inmate was violently robbed off his cellphone and cash while in court cells and the cellphone was not recovered immediately,” senior resident magistrate Edigah Kagoni said.
Mr. Ochieng told court that he was arrested by County traffic inspectorate for parking his tuktuk on a yellow line, arraigned in court and sentenced to pay a fine of Sh.5, 000.
He was later taken in the cell and as he was making a call near the cell’s widow he felt a hand grab his neck from behind.
“The hand grabbing me held my neck and attempted to empty my pocket as another hand snatched my phone,” he told court.
He further said he raised an alarm but other inmates did not come to his rescue, and he was rescued by court orderlies, but upon a search conducted on the accused persons; the items were not recovered.
The accused, Omondi, told court that he was in the same cell with the complainant and he heard him claiming that his cellphone was stolen.
His counterpart, Onyango, said he was convicted for the offence of loitering and the complainant lost his phone before he came into the cell.
Mr. Kagoni said the fact that the complainant’s phone was stolen while inside the court cell was not disputed and therefore sentenced the two accused persons to death.