Police officer slapped 4-year jail term

Zomba Senior Resident Magistrate Court, on Wednesday, sentenced a Police Officer Sub Inspector Luciano Tepani, 30, to a four-year jail term after being found guilty of causing grievance harm.

In 2017, Sub Inspector Tepani assaulted a 13-year-old boy while in police cell, leaving him with a wounded eye.

According to the court records, on 25 July, 2017, Tepani arrested and locked the boy at Sakata Police Unit on suspicion that he stole a cellphone from his neighbor.

It was revealed that Tepani, who was working as Officer in Charge (OC) at the unit, assorted the boy to force him to disclose whereabouts of the missing cellphone but later the boy was released without any charge.

Later the boy was taken to Zomba Central Hospital by his parents for treatment where doctors recommended to have his eye removed due to severe damage.

Before the judgement was passed, the police prosecutor in the case, Senior Superintendent Christopher Katani, asked the court for a custodial sentence saying the convict was supposed to be in the forefront to protect civilians and the youth in particular from all sorts of abuse, but he acted contrary.

In mitigation, Tepani, asked the court for lenience saying he is an orphan and that he is on mental illness treatment.

Tepani hails from Govati village in the area of Traditional Authority Govati in Mwanza district.

Speaking after the judgement was passed, Senior Superintendent Katani said the sentencing of Tepani should serve as a warning that no one is above the law.

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