Murder suspect walks free after police gives false evidence

A murder suspect Tafadzwa Mudavanhu has been acquitted by the High Court in a case he was accused of killing a passenger.

Mudavanhu landed in the dock on allegations of killing one Spinora Kamungeremu in Budiriro three years ago.

High Court judge, Justice Rodgers Manyangadze cleared Mudavanhu at the close of State’s ruling that the case against him was too weak for a reasonable court to convict him.

It was alleged that on 19 October, 2020, he struck Kamungeremu dead with a brick at a shopping centre in the Budiriro suburb of Harare.

Prosecutors were alleging that on the day in question, Kamungeremu was at Current Shopping Centre, Budiriro 5 B.

He was in the company of his two friends, Elia Svova and Jephart Chizura.

They were in Chizura’s motor vehicle which was parked at the shopping centre.

Kamungeremu left the vehicle for a nearby supermarket.

Whilst he was away, a lorry driven by one Darlington Bvindi rammed into Chizura’s vehicle.

Chizura confronted Bvindi, who appeared to have been drinking.

An argument erupted between the two, over the latter’s alleged drunk driving.

Kamungeremu then returned to the car.

Bvindi attempted to flee before the deceased tried to block him.

Mudavanhu was accused of having picked up a brick and struck the deceased once on the head.

The deceased lost consciousness and was ferried to Parirenyatwa Hospital, where he died on 3 November 2020.

To substantiate these allegations, evidence was led from Elia Svova, Jephart Chizura, Addmore Musiza, Decent Shuche and Bernard Kaiche.

Musiza and Kaiche were police officers.

Svova said after the altercation a mob responded.

He said Mudavanhu was in front of this mob and was the one who attacked his friend.

Chizura said the name given as that of the assailant was Chamunorwa Bvumba.

He is said to have hit the deceased with a beer bottle on the head.

The officers also said it was Bvumba who assaulted the deceased.

The judge however ruled there were serious and unresolved contradictions in the key witnesses’ statements.

“This left the investigation officer, and even the OIC, in grave doubt as to whether it was the accused or Bvumba who assaulted the deceased.

“What this means is that they submitted a docket for prosecution which they did not have confidence in.

“The prosecution had no easy task adducing evidence from the various witnesses it called.

“They simply could not explain the shift from Chamunorwa to the accused as the suspect in this matter.

“The evidence became so manifestly unreliable that the only reason for putting the accused to his defence is to get him convicted through self- incrimination,”said the judge.

“This case had an unusual number of police witnesses.

“Of the five witnesses who took the witness stand, three were police officers involved in the investigation of the case in one way or the other.

“As already indicated, all the officers were puzzled as to why their supposedly key witnesses, being the two civilian witnesses, ended up saying it was the accused who assaulted the deceased with a brick, when initially they had said it was Chamunorwa who assaulted the deceased with a beer bottle on the head.”

Chamunorwa’s whereabouts, up to the time of the trial, remained unknown.

The judge also noted that Bvindi was never placed under arrest as he managed to escape soon after the offence.


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