ONGWEDIVA – The Oshakati High Court has sharply reduced the four-year jail sentence for a young man who was convicted last year at Eenhana for assault by threat.
The 18-year-old Festus Mbishi was sentenced to an effective four years by the Eenhana Magistrate’s Court after he was found guilty of threatening to murder his 82-year-old grandmother in Ohangwena region last year.
He, however, appealed against the sentence in the Oshakati High Court. He partly succeeded with his appeal after Judge Herman January slashed his sentence by 19 months, leaving him to serve 29 months.
Mbishi has already served six months following his sentence in July last year.
In his judgment, January found the sentence of four years imprisonment without a fine was inappropriate and not giving credit to the time the accused spent in custody.
At the time of sentencing, the accused had already spent three months in custody.
January ruled that the initial sentence is harsh and shockingly inappropriate.
“Considering the age of the accused; that he is unsophisticated; that he is remorseful; that he pleaded guilty, and that he is a first offender, I find the sentence to be inappropriate. I also considered the period that he served until today,” said January.
The accused at the time of his sentence was a first-time offender and was employed as a cattle herder to generate income, as he dropped out of school in grade 2.
During his trial, Mbishi informed the court he was under the influence of alcohol and substance abuse at the time he threatened his grandmother.