A Chief Magistrate Court, sitting in Ondo town, has sentenced a 20-year-old man, Stephanus Stephen to 12 months imprisonment without an option of a fine for raping a 15-year-old girl (names withheld).
The police prosecutor, Benard Olagbayi, told the court that the convict raped the victim on different occasions. The charge sheet read: “That you, Stephanus Stephen, between February and May 2022 at No 5, Morobayo Street, Valentine, Ondo in the Ondo Magisterial District did unlawfully have carnal knowledge of a 15-year-old girl (names withheld) and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 221(1) of the Criminal Code Cap 37 Volume 1 Law of Ondo State of Nigeria, 2006. Olagbayi prayed the court to sentence Stephen, who was arraigned to court on a lone count of rape according to his plea, as he was not represented by a lawyer.
Stephen did not deny the offence charged against him but pleaded with the court for mercy and forgiveness. Narrating her ordeal, the 15-year-old girl (name withheld) informed the court that the victim overpowered and forcefully raped her twice in her father’s living room located at No 5 Morolayo Street, Valentino, Ondo town, Ondo State.
She told the court that the accused forcefully defiled her twice between February and May 2022, adding that she was asleep in her father’s living room when Stephen forcefully had carnal knowledge of her.
She added that she was scared and shouted when the accused started touching her but nobody was around to help, noting that she was the only one in the house.
“He forced himself on me and raped me. He was stronger than me. He also told me not to talk and that if I should tell anyone, he would kill me. I was very scared to tell anybody because of his threat.
“Around May again, he threatened me that if I did not cooperate with him, he would kill me and my sister.”
She revealed that she cooperated with Stephen due to the threat, but later summoned courage to inform her mother who got Stephen arrested.
“He was the one who deflowered me on the first day he raped me because it was painful and I saw blood on my private part.”
In his ruling, the presiding Chief Magistrate, Mrs Charity Adeyanju, found Stephen guilty and convicted him accordingly and sentenced him to 12 months imprisonment without an option of a fine.