Melody Baya Court Reporter
A BULAWAYO woman who was described by a magistrate as cruel has been fined $400 for brutally assaulting her sister’s six-year-old daughter after she allegedly found her being intimate with her five-year-old son.
The six-year-old, who was admitted at United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) after she was assaulted by Jennifer Mupasi, 24, of Emganwini suburb, has since been discharged.
At the time the crime was committed sometime between January 1 and January 11 this year, the woman, who is six months pregnant, was staying with the girl as her mother was in South Africa where she works.
The girl’s mother has since decided to take her daughter to the neighbouring country.
Provincial Magistrate Abednico Ndebele convicted Mupasi on her plea of guilty on a charge of ill-treating a child.
The magistrate described Mupasi as a cruel woman who deserved to be imprisoned, but decided to fine her after considering that she was pregnant and was a mother to two young children.
“You’re a very cruel woman. The injuries sustained by the child were too severe especially on a six-year-old. It’s also clear from the medical report that the child was also abused prior to the recent injuries she sustained. Even if the child was wrong, you were wrong to discipline her in such a manner,” said Ndebele.
“In passing sentence I’ve considered that you’re a mother to two small children and it will be unfair to deny them their mother by sending you to prison. You’ll therefore pay a fine of $400 or spend four months in prison if you default paying.”
Mupasi allegedly assaulted the girl with an unknown blunt object sometime between January 1 and January 11.
The prosecutor, Mufaro Mageza, said the girl suffered, among other injuries, multiple bruises on the back and buttocks.
Police arrested Mupasi on January 11 after being tipped about the abuse.