Four cops ordered to pay US$2500 to victim of Police brutality

Chedimbwa had been convicted of theft of a mobile phone handset and sentenced to serve community service.

The ZLHR said: We have succeeded in getting some ZRP officers to account for their misdemeanours after we got a ruling in which 4 officers have been ordered to pay US$2 500 in damages as compensation for severely torturing Theresa Khosana, a 40-year-old woman from Zaka in Masvingo.

Through our anti-impunity litigation, we have ensured that the wayward conduct of some ZRP officers has been put under check to prevent immunity and arbitrariness.

In this regard, Masvingo Magistrate Isaac Chikura, has ordered 4 police officers, Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga and Home Affairs, Cultural and Heritage Minister Hon. Kazembe to pay US$2 500 as compensation for damages for the maltreatment and brutality, which Khosana suffered while in police custody.

In his ruling, Magistrate Chikura stated that the order against the ZRP officers identified as Constable Mavis Sibanda, Constable John Njaya, Constable Mushonga and another unidentified law enforcement agent, who are stationed at Chivamba Police Base in Zaka in Masvingo province, is an “an exemplary award, which will meet the justices of the case.”

He ruled that ZRP officers who testified during the civil trial of the offending law enforcement agents, appeared to have been numb as to the depths of harm their conduct had on Khosana and stated that when the law enforcement agents were testifying, they were trying to avoid accountability for their actions.

Khosana was assisted by Martin Mureri and Peggy Tavagadza of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, to sue the ZRP officers after they tortured her as they coerced her to reveal the whereabouts of her son.

The 4 ZRP officers raided the homestead of Khosana on 6 May 2023 intending to arrest her 20 year-old son Byron Chedimbwa, who had reportedly defaulted on completing a community service sentence.

Khosana advised the ZRP officers that her son, who was convicted of theft of a mobile phone handset and sentenced to serve community service, was not at home and had travelled to Chiredzi.

Constable Sibanda, Constable Njaya, Constable Mushonga and their unidentified colleague, then sought to coerce Khosana to disclose the whereabouts of her son by arresting her and handcuffing her before detaining her at Chivamba Police Base.

On the way to Chivamba Police Base, Khosana was threatened with assault and untold suffering by the ZRP officers including being advised by Constable Sibanda that she would be taken to a dam to be immersed in water so that she could confess and reveal the whereabouts of Chedimbwa.

However, Constable Sibanda’s colleagues decided that instead of taking Khosana to a dam, they should use a bucket to pour water on her to humiliate her and force her to disclose where her son was.

While at Chivamba Police Base, the ZRP officers handcuffed her to a table and poured cold water on her.

Khosana spent the whole night while drenched with water and shackled to a table and was only released in the morning of 7 May 2023 without a charge being preferred against her.



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