Top cop in court over domestic violence

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Almost a full year after the case of the alleged assault on his live-in girlfriend was reported to the police, Assistant Commissioner Tomson Todd Jangara has finally been brought before the courts to answer to charges of domestic violence.

The case was brought before Chitungwiza magistrate Lazin Ncube.

The complainant, Zvikomborero Paunganwa, who has just given birth to a child whom she claims Jangara sired, told a Chitungwiza magistrate on Wednesday that her case had taken so long to come before the courts because of Jangara’s overbearing influence over the police that were dealing with his case.

Jangara, who came to court smartly dressed in a grey suit, blue shirt and a matching necktie, was represented by Nyasha Goneso of Goneso & Associates legal practitioners.

He denied ever assaulting Paunganwa and alleged that she had been beaten by her brothers who were forcing her to cohabit with him.

“I put it to you that you are fabricating these allegations in order to tarnish the accused’s image as a way of coercing him to marry you,” Jangara’s lawyer charged during cross examination.

Paunganwa however told the court that she could never make such serious allegations and then take them personally to people like Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri, Deputy Police Commissioner Godfrey Matanga, Airforce Commander Air Marshal Perence Shiri and several of Jangara’s more immediate bosses.

“I went to seek the intervention of Jangara’s bosses because I was getting no joy from the police that were dealing with this case at Chitungwiza police station where I had reported the case. They were all too junior to him and they were clearly afraid of him and tried to avoid the case to save their own skins,” said Paunganwa.

“How could he possibly deny assaulting me when he confirmed the same when he later took me to several health centres?

“We went together to Parirenyatwa Hospital and we also went together to several police clinics where we saw police doctors who made reports clearly stating that he had assaulted me to the point of fracturing my skull. He is mentioned in all the medical reports as my next of kin with his consent.

“The accused brought the memorandum (citing his violent behaviour) to me asking me to withdraw the case as it now threatened his promotion. I refused to do so because of the nature of the injuries I had sustained from the assault.

“The brutality of the assault was obviously meant to kill me. Imagine that a week after the assault, the evidence was still so vivid to the doctors that examined me,” Paunganwa narrated during cross-examination by Jangara’s lawyer.

Medical reports in the court records, including x-rays and scans indicate that Paunganwa sustained a fractured skull during the assault and had as a result, developed epilepsy, a condition she now lives with. Paunganwa told the court that Jangara had hit her head on the hard cement floor during the assault.

The case has been adjourned to April 29 when judgment is expected to be delivered.

The civil case is expected to be heard on April 23.