A 34-year-old man who pleaded not guilty to defiling two minors in his house after he found them eating guavas they had plucked from his fruit tree has been jailed for a whopping 110 years by a Kericho court.
Kericho Resident Magistrate Elizabeth Karani found Hillary Rotich guilty of defiling two girls aged eight and 12 years, on February 12, 2022 at Rungut area in Bureti sub-county, Kericho at about 4pm.
Rotich was also charged with alternative charges of committing indecent acts with minors to which he pleaded not guilty. The prosecution produced seven witnesses all who gave collaborating evidence against the accused.
The court heard on the fateful day, both minors who at the time were from school arrived at the accused’s home and started plucking guavas. The accused then came out of his house and greeted them before forcefully dragging them to his house where he defiled them in turns on his bed.
The accused threatened to kill them if they raised alarm. He later gave each of the two minors Sh50 and Sh25 correspondingly before opening his door ordering them to leave his house.
On arriving home, the eight-year-old informed her mother that the accused had defiled them and she testified in court that she confirmed.
The minors were taken to Kapkatet district hospital where they were examined and treated, the matter was reported at Litein police station.
A clinical officer who examined the two complainants told the court that they had indeed been defiled adding their private parts were swollen and hymens broken and still bleeding.
In his defense, the accused gave an unsworn statement before the court. He denied committing the offense saying he was arrested at his home after he arrived from work where he was informed of two children having been defiled and he was identified as the suspect.
The accused claimed bad blood between him and the complainant’s family caused the latter to associate him with the offense that he did not commit.
In mitigation, he said he suffered from Asthma and was a partial orphan and the sole breadwinner for his immediate family comprising a brother and his widowed mother.
A probation report tabled before the court indicated that the accused failed to admit committing the offence as charged and went through the full hearing to prove his innocence.
The report added that the accused was very remorseful to the complainant’s family with the community painting him as a man whose social standing was unquestionable.
However, the resident magistrate found the accused guilty and handed him 60 years for the first charge and 50 years for the second charge. Both sentences will run concurrently meaning the convict will remain behind bars for 60 years.
“I have considered the charges, the circumstances of the offences, the accused mitigation, the probation, pre-sentencing report, the law and how prevalent these offences are in Kericho. The accused be added in the register of dangerous sexual offenders,” ordered Karani.
The court reminded the accused of his right to appeal the sentence within 14 days if dissatisfied.
By Sarah Njagi