By Daniel Nemukuyu
A Dotito man has been jailed 15 years for striking his 70-year-old father with a pestle for eating his six mice. Two days before the murder, the father had reportedly stolen a jar of sour milk which Patrick Mapita (25) had sourced from a neighbouring village.
The old man’s appetite for delicacy prompted his son to commit the horrendous offence.
Mapita pleaded guilty to killing his father saying the old man’s behaviour had pushed him to the ropes, resulting in him fighting back.
Mapita told the court that apart from eating his mice and milk without permission, the old man had subjected him to emotional and verbal torture for years, repeatedly scolding him as uneducated.
High Court judge Justice Amy Tsanga considered submissions made in mitigations as well as aggravating factors before settling for a 15-year prison term as an appropriate punish- ment.
“An effective sentence of eight years proposed by the accused’s counsel would be wholly inadequate as would be a sentence of 12 years suggested by the State.
“Accordingly, the accused is sentenced to 15 years imprisonment,” ruled Justice Tsanga.
Ms Ndanatswa Mazvimbakupa from the National Prosecuting Authority prosecuted while Chirenje Legal Practitioners represented Mapita in the criminal proceedings.
During the trial, Mapita told the court that he never intended to kill his father but rather he sought to “discipline” him for eating his food.
He told the court that he struck his father once on the neck and he fell to the ground.
Mapita further struck his father twice with a pestle that weighed 2,6kg leading to his death.
A post-mortem report showed that the senior Mapita sustained a deep laceration on his face. He also sustained crushed upper and lower jaws as a result of the attack.
After killing his father, Mapita created a false story that his father was ill and bleeding from the nose and mouth.
When neighbours rushed to assist the old man, they found him dead in a pool of blood.
A police report was made resulting in Mapita’s arrest.
The offence was committed in 2013 but the trial dragged with the court ordering that Mapita be taken for mental health examination.
Mental health experts found that Mapita was mentally sound. The doctors’ report indicated that the man was fit to stand trial and answer to the allegations of murder. The Herald