CHIREDZI – In an incident that left Chiredzi residents shell-shocked, a 33-year-old police officer allegedly raped a 21-year-old pregnant Mozambican woman who was locked in the charge office for an alleged theft incident.
He was remanded in custody to October 24, for continuation of trial after he appeared at the magistrates’ court.
The court, led by Magistrate Tafadzwa Mhlanga, heard that the victim – a Mozambican lady who was presently staying in Chiredzi on an unidentified address – was in police custody after she was arrested for theft.
It is alleged that the police officer, Alec Mhlanga, who was doing charge office duties, allegedly raped the woman once without protection.
It is the State’s case that on October 11, 2016, the complainant was arrested and taken to Chiredzi police station facing charges of theft.
At the police station, she was handed to Mhlanga and the other police officer who was on duty because her condition was not proper for her to be locked in police cells.
The court also heard that during the night the complainant requested to use the toilet and she was escorted by Mhlanga while the other constable remained in the charge office.
After using the toilet, the woman was taken by Mhlanga to the investigations room where he told her that she was facing a very serious charge and the only way out was to have sexual intercourse with him so that he would facilitate her release from custody.
The court also heard that Mhlanga then ordered the complainant to hold the bench and raped her once without protection and ordered her not to tell anyone.
It is alleged that Mhlanga then took the lady back to the charge office where she spend the rest of the night.
The matter came to light the following morning when the complainant realised that Mhlanga had done nothing to facilitate her release and she later reported the case to the Constable who had taken over from Mhlanga in the morning, leading to his arrest.
Mhlanga is facing two charges, one of rape as defined in section 65 of the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act and the other of abuse of duty as a public officer as defined in section 174 of the same act.
Liberty Hove prosecuted. news