Mashudu Netsianda Senior Court Reporter
A BULAWAYO-based police officer, who struck a colleague with a brick on the head and inflicted life threatening injuries over 25 cents change during a beer binge, has been sentenced to seven years in jail. David Mamvura, 22, of Fairbridge Barracks, lost his temper when Jonathan Zimba told him that that the barmaid did not have his change after he sent him to buy opaque beer.
Mamvura was convicted of attempted murder by Bulawayo regional magistrate, Mark Dzira. He will serve an effective five years in jail after two years were suspended for five years on condition that he does not within that period commit a similar crime.
Dzira said Mamvura’s conduct was deplorable and tarnished the image of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP).
“You’re a police officer who was supposed to maintain law and order, but instead resorted to violence over 25 cents. As a member of the ZRP Support Unit you were trained to handle and deal with issues of violence, but sadly you failed to lead by example and what you did brought the name of your organisation into disrepute,” said Dzira.
In passing sentence, Dzira bemoaned an increase in violence related crimes.
“In some cases people are losing their lives through acts of violence. It’s clear that the victim did not intend to fight you, but you continued assaulting him and in the process inflicting life threatening injuries on the complainant. This crime calls for a custodial sentence,” ruled the magistrate.
Dzira advised Mamvura to approach the High Court if he was not happy with the conviction and sentence. In mitigation, Mamvura pleaded for leniency, saying he was married with a pregnant wife.
He also told the court that he lost a tooth during the fight. Prosecuting, Tinashe Dzipe said on December 22 last year, Mamvura was drinking beer in the company of some patrons.“He gave Zimba $1 to buy opaque beer which he did and said the barmaid did not have $0,25 change at that moment,” said Dzipe.
The court heard that Mamvura started shouting and ordered Zimba to go and get his change. Zimba went back to the barmaid and got the change, but Mamvura continued shouting and picked two concrete bricks and hit Zimba twice on the head.
Zimba collapsed and was rushed to hospital for medical attention.According to the medical report, Zimba sustained head injuries which are a threat to life.