Insane killer teacher acquitted

HARARE - A Chiredzi teacher has escaped jail after she was acquitted of murder charges on insanity grounds.

Miyetani Matsena, walked scot-free, despite State claims that she had murdered Kudzaishe Mutenzwa, her friend’s child, in November 2008.

Doctors have concluded that when she committed the offence, she was suffering from a mental disorder.

“She has complex partial seizures (a mental disorder). In my opinion at the time of the alleged crime, the accused was mentally disordered,” Patrick Mhaka, a doctor at Chikurubi Psychiatric Unit concluded.

According to state papers, the incident happened after Matsena’s friend Mercy Mutenzwa was reportedly possessed with evil spirits.

Matsena took custody of Mercy’s child. However, the court heard Matsena burnt Mercy’s clothes and plates, before she accompanied Kudzaishe and Trymore Chimanga to Osmond Shamuyarira’s house for prayers for Mercy to be delivered from the “demonic spirits”.

They reportedly prayed the whole night. The other two men left the premises, leaving Kudzaishe in Matsena’s custody.

When they came back after a short while, they realised that Kudzaishe’s body was lying motionless, smeared with cooking oil.

They took the body to hospital, where it was certified dead upon arrival. 

State papers claim Matsena intoxicated the child using cooking oil, leading to its death.

However, after going through the doctor’s report, High Court Judge Esther Muremba acquitted Matsena in terms of the Mental Health Act.

“It is ordered that respondent (Matsena) be and is hereby found not guilty because of insanity,” Muremba said.

Editor Mavuto appeared for the state, while Matsena was represented by Blessing Nyamwanza.


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