Man sentenced to 18 years in jail for killing woman and her 2-year-old baby

Alex Ocen at Lira High Court premises before pleading guilty to the offences on May 5, 2021. PHOTO | ISAAC OTWII

Lira High Court has sentenced a 21-year-old man to 18 years in jail after he pleaded guilty to killing a woman and her 2-year-old child following a land dispute in Aromo Sub County, Lira District.

The convict Alex Ocen and his nine accomplices appeared before the court on Wednesday for sentencing after opting for a plea bargain.

Ocen, who faced counts of attempted murder, murder, and arson, was convicted on his own plea of guilt.

Court heard that the convict and nine others still on remand with malice aforethought murdered Ketty Akwero, 41, and her child, Dolly Akullo in March 2020.

Court also heard that the accused persons attempted to murder Mr Tonny Ayo Akwar, a relative to the deceased, and later burnt three huts including property that was inside.

A postmortem report about the deceased and her daughter presented before the court revealed they died from several injuries inflicted on them.

The presiding judge, Mr Isaac Muwata, told the convict: “You and your brothers planned to kill and, on March 6, 2020, you prepared your weapons and attacked the deceased along the road. After killing her, you went to her home and also murdered Dolly Akullo, her daughter.”

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“You will therefore serve 20 years for each of the two counts of murder, 10 years for the third count of murder, and 5 years for the fourth count. The sentencing shall run concurrently. The time spent on remand shall be deducted.”

Justice Muwata explained that altogether the convict will serve a jail term of 18 years.

Mr. Andrew Eriya Kategaya, the son of the deceased said the sentence does not equate to the damage that the accused persons caused to his family.

“To date, my brothers and I are struggling to cope with life after that painful incident. We no longer have houses and we are still surviving at the mercy of well-wishers. The accused persons are still threatening to come back for us,” he said shortly after the court session.

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