New year’s eve killer jailed 10yrs
A BULAWAYO man, who bashed a drinking mate to death for returning an insult during a New Year’s Eve celebration, was yesterday sentenced to 10 years in jail.
Linda Geshom Tyren (35) of Njube suburb punched and kicked Jabulani Phiri (44) until he lost consciousness. Phiri succumbed to the injuries a week later.
Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese convicted Tyren of culpable homicide and sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
The judge suspended two years of the sentence for five years on condition that Tyren does not within that period commit a similar crime.
In passing sentence, the judge said Tyren’s moral blameworthiness was high since he was the aggressor.
“The accused was the aggressor when he uttered extremely demeaning and provocative words which are not expected from a reasonable person. You assaulted the deceased in a reckless fashion,” said Justice Makonese.
He said Tyren’s conduct was deplorable and urged people to resolve disputes in an amicable manner.
“What makes this crime deplorable is the fact that deceased died for no apparent reason. Violence will not be tolerated by our courts and a prison term is certainly unavoidable in such circumstances,” ruled Justice Makonese.
Prosecuting, Mr Whisper Mabaudhi said on December 31, 2013 shortly after 9PM, Phiri was celebrating New Year’s Eve with his friends at Hollywood Building in Bulawayo.
The court heard that Phiri went to buy beer at a nearby supermarket and on his return he found Tyren who was also drinking beer at the same building.
“When the accused saw the deceased approaching, he verbally insulted him. The deceased responded by insulting Tyren using the same words,” said Mr Mabaudhi.
Tyren was angered by Phiri’s reaction to the insults and he advanced towards the deceased.
Sensing danger, Phiri apologised but the Tyren ignored him and started assaulting him.
Phiri’s friends intervened and restrained Tyren before they left the scene. The court heard that a few minutes later, Tyren teamed up with one Fungai Ncube who is still at large and they confronted Phiri accusing him of disrespecting them.
“The accused and Ncube assaulted Phiri and left him lying unconscious on the ground,” said Mr Mabaudhi.
An ambulance took him to Mpilo Central Hospital where he was admitted before he died on January 8, 2014 due to injuries sustained as a result of the attack.
According to post-mortem results the cause of death was due to brain haemorrhage, head injuries and trauma.
Tyren, through his lawyer Mr Wish Ndongwe of Mashayamombe and Company Attorneys, pleaded for leniency, saying he was remorseful for his actions.
He said he was a breadwinner looking after his siblings and grandparents — @mashnets