Meru man accused of robbing an 85-year-old of a walking stick freed from death sentence

MERU COUNTY: The High Court sitting in Meru has freed a man who had been sentenced to death for violently robbing an 85-year old man of a walking stick and Sh5, 000 cash.

The court freed Munjia Michubu, who had been convicted of the offence of robbery with violence, for allegedly robbing M'Mwirabua M'Arungu of the said items as he walked to his shamba around 7am on May 25 2012.

M'Arungu, told the court that the suspect allegedly hit him with a C-line panga and head-butted him on the forehead causing him to fall unconscious for four hours.

The grandpa claimed that after regaining consciousness around 11am, he found his Sh5, 000 cash which was in his breast pocket and a walking stick missing.

But in his defence Michubu, claimed that there was a grudge between his family and the complainant's and that he was framed.

Michubu added that the C-line panga which he was accused of using to attack the old man was never produced in court, and that it "sounded a new weapon" to him.

High Court judges Aaron Makau and Lady Justice Jessie Lessit, faulted the death sentence meted on him citing inadequate evidence to support conviction to a robbery with violence offence.

The judges said Mr M'Arungu, in his testimony, never mentioned of the suspect demanding any cash from him and that he only reported missing his cash and walking stick after coming around after four hours.

"We find that the prosecution did not prove that anything was stolen by the appellant from the complainant."

"The manner in which this matter was handled creates further doubt as to whether the complainant was robbed as alleged."

Ultimately the judges held: "The appellant should be set at liberty forthwith unless he is otherwise lawfully held."