BY JENNIFER KUSAPA
A 23-year-old man has been sentenced to two years six months for wounding two victims on dates in 2019 and 2020.
The accused man is Junior Daoga of Malaita province and he committed the offences at White River, west Honiara.
Principal Magistrate Fatimah Taeburi in her sentence said the accused is not a man of good character. He had prior criminal convictions in 2017; he was convicted in the Magistrates Court for common assault and malicious damage and there should be specific deterrence considered in this case.
“This prisoner must be taught that it is wrong to resort to violence, he must learn that people who use weapons to cause harm and fear to others and cause damage to property will be punished, we live in a society with other people, we must learn to respect other people and their properties, only then can we peacefully co-exist,” Ms Taeburi said.
The prisoner pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawful wounding contrary to section 229 of the penal code.
The first count was in relation to an incident on August 30, 2019; he met the first victim at a market stall at Tasahe B in Honiara. He left the market and went back to his home. Upon his return to the market stall after a few minutes, he asked the victim about some rumours; it was at that time he hit the victim on the head using a weapon called nunchaku. The victim fell unconscious and sustained an injury to his head. The victim was admitted at the National Referral Hospital; he released after two days.
Magistrate Taeburi said it was strange there was no medical report presented in court by the prosecution to describe the extent of the injury sustained by the first victim.
“I cannot convict the prisoner for unlawful wound in count one. I am also satisfied that the circumstances of the offending in count one proves all the elements of the offences of unlawful wounding. Although the counsels have conceded in the agreed facts that the victim in count one, sustained an injury, there is no medical evidence or any other material to describe the extent of the injury sustained, without medical evidence, I cannot be certain that the injury sustained by the victim in count one satisfies the definition of a wound as provided in the penal code,” Taeburi said.
Therefore, she convicted the accused on count one on a lesser offence of assault causing actual bodily harm contrary to section 245 of the Penal Code
The second count relates to an incident on November 8, 2020; the prisoner met the second victim at Whiteriver in Honiara, he enquired about the whereabouts of his girlfriend, and there he stabbed the victim on the chest with a scissors.
The victim was also taken to the National Referral Hospital, the medical report showed that he sustained a wound of one centimeter to the left side of his chest, he was given some antibiotics and released the same day.
Court took into account his actions that he was armed on both occasions and used dangerous weapons to cause harm to both victims, he struck both victims at vulnerable parts of the human body. He hit the first victim on the head with a nunchaku and he stabbed the second one on the chest with a scissors.
Magistrate Taeburi imposed a sentence of one year for count one and one year six months for the second count. The sentences are to be served consecutively, therefore a total sentence of two years and six months imprisonment is imposed.
Court also made direction that period spent in custody to be considered.
Right to appeal within 14 days.