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Man convicted for injuring friend with a cutlass

Oct 16, 2020, 11:52 AM | Article By: Dawda Faye

Alpha Straford, who injured his friend seriously with a cutlass was recently convicted before Magistrate Mam Samba of the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court.

He was charged with assault causing grievous bodily harm. Earlier, he denied the allegation when the charge sheet, which was presented by Inspector Inna Jallow, was read to the court.

Defence council Dayo represented the convict on the 8th October 2020, when he changed his plea from not guilty to guilty.

The prosecuting officer, Inspector Inna Jallow, read out the facts to the court.

She stated that on the 14th August, 2020 at Bakoteh, Malick Darboe, the victim and Alpha Straford had an issue. She added that there was push and pull between the two. She further told the court that they were later separated.

Inspector Jallow posited that while Malick Darboe was going, Alpha Straford ran into his home, came back with a cutlass and attacked Malick Darboe on the street and injured him seriously on his legs.

According to Inspector Jallow, Malick Darboe’s brother decided to sacrifice his life to save his brother. The prosecuting officer told the court that Malick Darboe was taken to Bakoteh Police Station where he was escorted to the hospital by a police officer.

Inspector Jallow further said that a metal object was inserted into Malick Darboe’s leg during his operation, adding that he was discharged after three days.

She noted that Alpha Straford was arrested and taken to Bakoteh Police Station where he admitted committing the offence, and was cautioned and charged.

At the end of the narration of the facts, the magistrate asked Alpha Straford whether the facts were correct as narrated. He answered in the positive.

Defence Counsel Dayo pleaded with the court in mitigation. He said that the convict did not waste the time of the court and pleaded guilty. He noted that a man who owns up to his deeds is an honourable man.

He further stated that the convict is a young man and if the court sent him to prison, he would mix with hardened prisoners.

“The convict has shown remorse. He and the victim are close friends. His family and the family of the victim had met and discussed. In fact the family of the convict has assisted the victim financially while he was admitted at the hospital”, he told the court.

Council Dayo urged the court not to convict but a fine, citing section 259 of the Criminal Procedure Code. He also urged the court to temper justice with mercy.

Inspector Inna Jallow however told the court that although the convict had shown remorse, the court should consider the degree of the injuries of the victim. She then applied for compensation for the victim, after she had already tendered the pictures of the injuries of the victim.

Magistrate Mam Samba, in her judgment, said she had considered the plea of the defence counsel on behalf of the convict. She stated that she had also considered the degree of the injuries of the victim.

“This crazy act should be stopped. There should be punishment to deter others,” she said.

The convict was finally sentenced to a fine of D5000 in default to serve one year imprisonment. He was also given a suspended sentence of five years, and was ordered to pay a compensation of D50, 000 in default to serve two years imprisonment.    

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