A Police Officer has appealed to the Nairobi Court to allow him to start preaching to youth and fellow officers in the police department to steer clear of crime instead of sentencing him to death after being convicted of armed robbery where he robbed Keshia Daksh Patel of $150,000 (KSh15 million) in December 2020.

Corporal George Onyango Mtere told Chief Magistrate Bernard Ochoi at the Milimani Law Courts, “I have volunteered to preach to youth and my fellow officers in the police department to deter them from crime.”

Corporal Mtere said he would be of more value if he were kept out rather than sentenced to hang as requested by the prosecution led by James Gachoka.

Analyzing the reports from a behavior correction officer, chief’s statement, Ruiru police station chief officer, complainants, and a report from the National Council on the Administration of Justice (NCAJ), Lawyer Danstan Omari told the magistrate, “Corporal Onyango would be more beneficial outside than in prison.”

Pleading for a non-custodial sentence, Mr. Omari said Corporal Onyango, aged 49 and a father of five, has repented his actions and is ready to serve the community in a different capacity.

The lawyer said the accused had served this country as a police officer for 25 years.

“Corporal Onyango has served this country as a police officer. He has fought Al Shabaab terrorists. He has dealt with criminals. He has never been brought before the Police Department’s Disciplinary Committee. The Behavior Correction Department has interviewed several people, including the Chief of their Ward and his former station commander, and they all requested the court to give him a non-custodial sentence because he is a good person,” Mr. Omari narrated.

He also said the complainant Dakshi Patel had forgiven him and told the court he did not misuse the pistol he had.

What Dakshi requested was the return of the recovered money.

Mr. Omari told the court that the pastor of the church Corporal Onyango attends admitted that the accused advises young people in church on how to be righteous.

The lawyer told the court that the accused suffers from life-threatening illnesses, and if jailed, “it is like being buried alive because the prison department has admitted that it lacks medicines to treat diseases such as Cancer, Diabetes, and High Blood Pressure.”

Urging the court to emulate the High Court in Mombasa where a judge ordered a priest to return to the church to tell the faithful about the consequences of engaging in sexual activities, Mr. Omari said Corporal Onyango is better off outside than being pushed to prison.

Another lawyer, Gordon Ogado, joined Mr. Omari in telling the court that his four clients charged together with Corporal Onyango need only non-custodial sentences.

But prosecution leader James Gachoka asked the court to sentence Corporal Onyango and Bernard Ogutu Okech to death for armed robbery using a pistol.

“This court has already found them guilty, and there is only one punishment – death because the accused used a dangerous weapon to threaten Keshia to drop her bag containing money,” said Mr. Gachoka.

Mr. Gachoka said the officer used a pistol to threaten Dakshi Patel – an employee of Mitsumi Computer Garage.

When she saw the pistol, Dakshi got scared and dropped the bag containing money.

The magistrate remanded the accused persons until April 17, 2024, when he will deliver judgment.