By RUSHDIE OUDIA
A 24-year-old woman (picture-middle) who stunned a Kisumu court after she admitted to having sex a minor, has been sentenced to 15 years in jail.
Ms Judith Wandera was on Wednesday found guilty of defilement and intentionally performing indecent act on a minor contrary to the Sexual Offences Act, on July 5, 2017 at Kicomi area.
Seven witnesses testified against her in the case while she never presented any, only defending herself during the entire trial.
The court, after considering all the evidence presented by the complainant, ruled that it agrees the two knew each other and had sexual intercourse on numerous occasions.
Principal Magistrate Ms Joan Wambilyanga, in his judgment, said the two were arrested on July 17, one year after they had started getting sexually involved.
“Both admitted to having sex, sometimes protected, sometimes unprotected. According to her, she could not tell how many times they did it,” said Ms Wambilyanga.
In her defence, Ms Wandera claimed she could not establish on the first day they met, that he was a minor.
She narrated to the court how they met and started dating, adding that looking at the physical appearances, she could not tell he was under age.
The Sexual Offences Act actually allows an accused to cite this as defence, especially when physical appearance can be deceiving. But on this occasion, the court found that the woman made no efforts to establish whether the person she was dating was actually an adult.
In court, Ms Wandera further revealed to the court that that the boy who was a bodaboda operator was also fond of abusing drugs. She indicated that the boy appeared young only when he was present before the court to testify.
But the magistrate dismissed the argument saying according to Sexual Offences Act, she should have shown what steps she took to establish the age of the boy.
“There was no evidence the complainant lied about his age and the accused’s defence was disregarded based on her failure to prove what steps she took to establish whether the boy was under age,” said Ms Wambilyanga.
She added that the two were arrested twice and on those occasions asked to stop the relationship after her mother raised the age difference issue, but the woman ignored.
“The mother was not happy because the woman was older,” said the magistrate.
In mitigation, Ms Wandera asked for forgiveness since she has a son, a brother and her mother she was taking care of.
“I am the only person taking care of all of them. Please forgive me I will never repeat the offence again,” she pleaded.
But her pleas fell on deaf ears, as was handed 15 years in prison.