A MAGISTRATE has castigated two Plumtree police officers who tried to frame a taxi driver for attempted murder after alleging he tried to run over one of them at an illegal roadblock. Nobert Kakono (31) told regional magistrate Mr Chrispen Mberewere that he was manning a two-man roadblock with his colleague Constable Rashama when Philip Masuku (26) tried to run over him along Plumtree Road.
According to the Police Act, a legal roadblock must have at least three police officers. Kakono claimed his superiors had “legalised” the two-man roadblock. He said Masuku refused to stop and hit him with his car. After falling off the bonnet of the speeding vehicle, claimed Kakono, he got up, gave chase and managed to catch Masuku.
Mr Mberewere said the court was tired of comedian police officers who rush to concoct attempted murder charges whenever they had altercations with drivers. Dismissing the cops’ testimony, he said their rigmarole was too incredible to be accepted by a person of sober mind.
“We are seeing a worrying trend of traffic cops who have developed a tendency of wasting our time. This is a very serious court and surely we cannot waste time on comedy and fabrications from law enforcers,” he said. He questioned the feasibility of Kakono running after a speeding vehicle soon after he had been hit.
“A normal human being would be worried about his life first after that miraculous jump off a moving vehicle. Where did you get the energy and courage to run after a vehicle and catch up with its driver after landing on the road?” asked Mr Mberewere.
Masuku’s lawyer Mr Liberty Mcijo from Mcijo Dube and Partners had a field day cross examining the two cops who suddenly said they were three at the roadblock as their third colleague had moved away briefly. Mr Mcijo also questioned why Kakono’s medical report stated that he was hit by a sharp object.
At one point, the lawyer, prosecutor, magistrate and people in the gallery could not help laughing their lungs out as the cops mumbled on with their ever changing testimony. The prosecutor, Manyiwa was forced to withdraw the attempted murder charges against Masuku before the State presented its case.
“Your worship it is clear that there is nothing else to chase in this case. Please allow me to withdraw the charges before my colleague Mr Mcijo applies for discharge,” said Mr Manyiwa.
Mr Mberewere applauded Mr Manyiwa and said, “I’m glad that for once the State has been exemplary in saving the courts’ time. In the future such witnesses must not be afforded a chance to waste time. Charges against accused are hereby withdrawn and he is discharged.
The state was alleging that Kakono and other police officer were stationed at the six-kilometre peg along the Plumtree-Mphoengs Road when the incident occurred on May 8. Masuku allegedly accelerated and hit Kakono, who was thrown off the bonnet and landed in the middle of the road. He sustained some injuries in the process. The other police officer then allegedly tried to signal Masuku to stop, without luck.
“As Kakono chased after the vehicle and caught up with it, the other police officer cops took down contact details of the owner of the taxi which were written on the vehicle. Masuku escaped on foot. Upon making a follow up, the owner of the vehicle directed them to his driver resulting in Masuku’s arrest,” read the outline. chronicle