The Supreme Court has handed suspended sentences to two men who made threatening remarks against a police officer.
Justine Yawissi and Samuel Jimmy were charged with one count of threats to kill a person, an offence which carries a maximum penalty of 15 years’ imprisonment.
On February 26, 2020, at around 5pm, both men who are in their 20s were reportedly drunk and disorderly, and disturbing people and traffic on the public road leading to Ohlen Whitewood.
The complainant who is a police and other police officers attended the scene. Upon arrival, the officer concerned told the duo to go home and sleep. Yawissi swore at the officer, grabbed the officer's shirt and said words to the effect, “I will cut your neck, I know where you live and I will go to your house and cut the necks of your family members".
Jimmy also made similar threat to the police officer. According to court, the threats were repeated several times, which made the compliant feared for his life and the safety of other officers accompanying him.
“Threatening to kill a law enforcement officer is behaviour that must be discouraged. A discharge without conviction will not serve that purpose in my view,” Justice Dudley Aru stated.
More officers were called to the scene and the duo were arrested on that day.
When considering the defense's counsel on submission for a suspended sentence, Justice Aru stated, “I accept that the offending is at the lower end of the scale, however, the threat was made to a Police officer, a man who is duty bound to enforce the law.
“A sentence must not only be seen as punishment for the crime, but it has to serve as a deterrence for any future offending."
They were given an end sentence of 12 months’ imprisonment each but was suspended for two years.
The duo were ordered to do 100 hours of community work with supervision for six months. They were reminded that should they reoffend during the period of their suspension, they would be remanded to serve their full sentences.