Magistrate disqualifies herself from teacher sex assault case
21 August 2015, 08:15
Nakuru - A Nakuru magistrate Thursday disqualified herself from handling the hearing of a sexual assault case facing a Njoro Girls high school teacher.
Nakuru Chief Magistrate Doreen Mulekyo pulled out of the proceedings of the case involving Paul Gicheru faulting the prosecution of impairing her objectivity in the matter.
“I am flabbergasted, baffled by the inadequacy of the prosecution in handling of this case. I therefore exclude myself from hearing of this matter because my open-mindedness has already been interfered with,” said Mulekyo.
While making the ruling, the magistrate cited failure by the prosecution to explicitly present important matters in the case which she said had delayed hearing of the the matter for almost a month.
She further slammed the prosecution for what she termed as scantiness and mix-up of crucial facts in the case.
The move came after the prosecution applied for a third time to make amendments on the accused’s charge sheet.
State counsel, Nelly Ngovi had asked for an adjournment of the matter to allow the prosecution to correct errors in the charge sheet.
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The hearing of the matter which was scheduled to take off Thursday failed as defence lawyer Karanja Mbugua cited errors including those of dates on the charge sheet, which has already been amended twice.
The charges were read afresh to the accused who maintained his innocence in the matter.
Paul Gicheru is accused of sexually molesting six school girls at the institution situated at Njoro, Nakuru county on diverse dates between June 15, 2014 and May 2015.
Gicheru is also accused of defiling a 15-year-old girl on several occasions between June 15 and 28 last year in the school and in a public drinking joint.
The Kiswahili teacher however denied all the accusations against him and was released on a KES 500 000 bond.
The accused has since been interdicted and ordered to report to Njoro Police Station once a week.
On Thursday, the prosecution paraded witnesses including five of the school girls alleged to have been assaulted to testify in the case.
On June 8, the court adjourned the hearing of the case to enable the girls to continue with their studies uninterrupted and selected the Holiday date for trial of the teacher.
The school was closed in June after the students went on rampage protesting against the conduct of the accused teacher.
The magistrate scheduled the matter for mention Thursday for substitution of the further amended charge sheet.
The matter will however be heard by a duty court.
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