Tempering justice with mercy, Maun Chief Magistrate Mompati Taolo slapped Pelonomi Montsho with a four- -year jail sentence with two of the years suspended for three years on condition that he did not commit robbery or violence in the given period.
Magistrate Taolo said that he took into consideration that the property stolen was recovered and that the accused benefited nothing from it. “I have also considered that you did your best to ask for forgiveness from your victim but you have to know that robbery is not a minor offence,” He said in his explanation of why he did not impose the 10- year- minimum sentence for robbery.
Turning down Montsho’s request for the court to whip him and let him go instead of sending him to jail , Taolo said that Montsho needed to know that it was not only the victim who was affected by the robbery but the society at large. “My sentence can affect the victim’s relatives if they were to hear that you have been released,” said Taolo, adding that Montsho should consider himself lucky to have gotten away with such a light sentence for robbery.
Particulars of the offence are such that on the 22nd of April 2012 around 2300hrs at Boseja ward, Montsho robbed a 29 -year- old man of P7.00 and a cell phone by tripping him from behind.
The culprit then fled from the crime scene but the police followed footprints to Montsho’s place where he was found with the stolen cell-phone.
His lame argument that he was playing a joke on “an old friend” was dismissed by the court because Taolo had denied knowing the young man personally.
“The court cannot be made to believe that the whole episode was a joke because the complainant does not even know your names.” said the Directorate of Public Prosecutions Neo Serumola.