1.The accused who was initially charged with of murder but later pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of the offence of manslaughter contrary to Section 202 as read with Section 205 of the Penal Code on 13th July 2022. The offence took place in the night of 21st October 2021 at Ngangarithi in Nyeri County.
2.The circumstances surrounding the offence according to the plea agreement, are that the deceased was at Milimani Bar at Ngangarithi accompanied by his friends enjoying refreshments in the evening hours. At around 8.30 pm, the accused who looked drunk went to the bar and caused commotion. He was forced out by the management assisted by some customers present in the bar. He then went out and a short while later, he returned with a group of people and demanded to be served with drinks. The management once again declined to give the group service in the bar. The group of men then went outside but found another group waiting for them. Confrontation between the two groups ensued. The accused stabbed the deceased with a knife five (5) times on the chest, stomach and head thus causing death.
3.Ms Wamuyu the defence counsel in mitigation said the accused was remorseful and regretted his action that caused the death of the deceased. That the accused has now become aware of the impact of the assault on the victims. It was submitted that at the material time, the deceased was under the influence of drink. The defence counsel said the pre-sentence report was positive and that the court may consider a non-custodial sentence in favour of the accused.
4.The pre-sentence report states that the accused is aged 41 years while the deceased was 35 years. The family said that the accused had developed symptoms of depression after separating with his wife to an extent that interaction with the family reduced. The family is desirous of receiving the accused back home to facilitate treatment for the psychological problem the accused has developed over the years.
5.The victims family expressed sentiments of irreparable loss of their beloved brother. It said that the deceased was an orphan and had a promising future before his demise. All they ask for is justice from the court.
6.The post-mortem report described the injuries inflicted on the deceased as two penetrating wounds on the chest that were caused by a sharp object and which were the cause of death. Additionally, the deceased had other stabs in the abdomen, head and face. These injuries were of grave nature and the deceased had no chances of survival after the assault. The court must consider the gravity of these injuries in imposing sentence.
7.The factors set out in the Judiciary Sentencing Policy are hereby taken into account and the fact that the accused saved the time of the court in pleading guilty to the charge. It is noted that the pre-sentence report recommends a non-custodial sentence. However, considering grave nature of the injuries inflicted being five (5) stabs using a knife, this court finds a non-custodial sentence not appropriate. A deterrent sentence ought to be imposed in the circumstances.
8.The accused is hereby sentenced to serve ten (10) years imprisonment to commence from January 1, 2022 being the date of arrest,
9.It is hereby so ordered.