A GOKWE teenager, who six years ago dug a pit and buried an eight-year-old girl, escaped a prison term last week after High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese handed him a wholly suspended four-year sentence for culpable homicide.
Polite Tekwane, now aged 19, of Marere village, Chief Mukoka in Gokwe, was handed a wholly suspended four-year jail-term by the High Court judge, after he convicted him for culpable homicide.
The incident occurred when Tekwane was 13 and a Grade 5 pupil.
Passing sentence, Justice Makonese considered that Tekwane was a minor when he committed the crime and that he was negligent in causing Zanele Ngwenya’s death.
Prosecutors told the court that on September 12, 2010 Tekwane, the deceased and other pupils were coming from school after being sent away for non-payment of fees.
When they reached Mandisarara River, the children agreed to play by burying each other with sand.
Tekwane dug a pit and got hold of the deceased, whom he laid in the pit on her stomach. He then covered the victim with sand and went on to sit on her back.
“On observing that the accused was covering the now deceased’s head with sand, one of the pupils decided to rescue her but was threatened by the accused,” prosecutors said.
“At the same time, the now deceased would try to free herself but the accused would press her head down in the sand. Finally, the accused buried the deceased alive and left the scene.”
The victim’s body was discovered by other pupils who later reported the matter to the police, leading to Tekwane’s arrest.