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Murder convict escapes hangman’s noose

Cathrine Moemedi
GUILTY: Granny Mohaladi

A 30-year-old Maun Man has been sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for the murder of a 70-year-old Man during a fall out at a shebeen on November 25, 2017.

Granny Mohaladi was convicted of murdering Kenanogile Bathari in October this year. In his sentence Justice Godfrey Nthomiwa noted that exceptional extenuating circumstances exists in the matter.

According to Nthomiwa Mhaladi was still young at the time of the commission of the offence.

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“The court finds that youthful exuberance coupled with intoxication and the fact that the old man provoked him by hitting his dog first are exceptional extenuating circumstances that exist in the matter,” stated Judge Nthomiwa in his ruling.

It was heard that on the fateful day, Bathari was already at the drinking spot, in Sedie ward, when Mohaladi, his dog and another man turned up.

The first sign of trouble started when the old man struck Mohaladi’s pet with a knobkerrie for barking at him.

Later, the elder turned the knobkerrie on Mohaladi after he caught the younger man taking a sip from his drink despite being warned not to, hitting him with such force the wooden club split in two.

Mohaladi reacted by grabbing a piece of the knobkerrie and beating the grandfather on the head and on the back.

“The postmortem confirmed that the deceased died from spinal cord injuries caused by the beating he received from the accused person,” noted Judge Godfrey Nthomiwa in his ruling.

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The Judge also declared Mohaladi the aggressor, as he was seen taking the deceased’s traditional beer even though he was clearly told not to.

“He splashed the old man with beer when he reprimanded him and in retaliation he [Bathari] struck him with a knobkerrie. The assault left him motionless and he was rushed to Maun General Hospital where he was treated and discharged the same day,” continued Nthomiwa.

The nurse who examined Bathari observed that while his body temperature was normal, his blood pressure was low.

“The nurse noted that the victim was brought on a wheelchair, with pains on the neck and the head. His face was swollen and was also soaked in blood,” said the Judge.

The pensioner was kept under observation for two hours, showed signs of improvement and was discharged and allowed to go home.

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Sadly, things took a tragic turn the next day.

Bathari’s condition deteriorated rapidly; he was rushed to Letsholathebe Memorial Hospital but passed away a few hours after being admitted. The post-mortem would show that he died because of a fracture to the fifth and sixth cervical vertebrae.

In his evidence in chief, Mohaladi testified that he was well acquainted with the deceased, who, as one of the elders in his community, practically raised him.

He further told the court he did not know why the old man hit him for trying to drink from his cup because they usually shared.

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