Friday 23 March 2018


Shebeens are dangerous places where drunk patrons can engage in fights, some of which might be fatal, a High Court has said in a case in which two men escaped with wholly suspended sentences for killing a reveller at their shebeen over a $2 debt.

Tatenda Foot (28) and Joseph Mapa (27), both from Hopely, Harare, had denied murdering Paradzayi Mapa when their trial opened before Justice Tawanda Hebert Chitapi last week.

Through their lawyers Advocates Chido Mafongoya and Kerry Hutchings of The Advocates’ Chambers, the duo pleaded guilty to culpable homicide, which the court accepted in view of the circumstances of the case.

Justice Chitapi slapped the two with three years each in jail.

However, the sentence was wholly suspended for five years on condition of good behaviour.
In passing sentence, the judge said the case fits well with the old saying that “money is the source of all evil”.

“Here is a debt of $2,” said Justice Chitapi. “This case will go down as one where the community will always blame the state of mind of the parties involved.”

The tragic incident, he said, took place at an illegal beer outlet and the reasons why shebeens were outlawed was the fact that they were not always monitored by the law enforcement agencies. “This case will also serve as a lesson,” said Justice Chitapi.

“People should not operate shebeens and because they are not monitored by law enforcement agencies, sloshed patrons can engage in conflicts leading to death.”

Charges against Foot and Mapa arose on April 11, 2015 when the duo was at Mapa’s shebeen, where an argument arose between the now deceased’s brother and Mapa over a $2 debt.

Paradzayi joined the altercation in a bid to help his brother, the court heard. Mapa, it is alleged, then picked a brick and struck Paradzayi on the head and he fell on the ground.

Foot allegedly then took a stick and assaulted the man all over his body while he was lying down, leading to his death. Herald


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