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4 factors that may affect Jowie's jail time as judge postpones his sentencing

Justice Grace Nzioka has postponed the sentencing of Jowie Irungu for the murder of Monica Kimani

Jowie Irungu in court on March 8, 2024

High Court Judge Grace Nzioka expressed disappointment over the late submission of documents for the sentencing of Joseph Irungu alias Jowie who was found guilty of the murder of Monica Kimani.

Justice Nzioka, on Friday March 8, criticised the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, the family of Monica Kimani and the accused for the late submissions.

She also noted that the accused person, Jowie, had appointed another lawyer to represent him alongside his other counsel.

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Jowie’s defence team requested seven more days to respond to the documents filed by the victim's family and the pre-sentence report, citing late submission by Monica Kimani's family and the ODPP.

The family of the victim filed the documents on Friday morning, while the ODPP filed them on Thursday evening.

“Because of the late service, we need to digest what has been filed, for us to be able to address the court,” Jowie’s lawyer said.

However, Justice Nzioka declined to grant the accused’s request for seven more days.

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She instead postponed the sentencing to Wednesday, March 13, to allow the accused to file the necessary responses by Monday, March 11.

Justice Nzioka noted that Jowie's sentence will take into consideration all the documents filed, including the pre-sentence report.

A pre-sentence report is a document prepared for the court after a defendant has been convicted or pleaded guilty to an offence but before they are sentenced.

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This report is prepared by a probation officer or a court-appointed officer and serves several purposes:

It provides a detailed assessment of the defendant, including their background, character, mental and physical condition, and any other relevant factors that might influence the sentencing decision.

The report evaluates the risk the defendant poses to the public and the likelihood of reoffending.

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This risk assessment helps in determining the most appropriate sentence to reduce the chances of future offences.

Based on the findings, the report may include recommendations for the type of sentence that could be most effective in rehabilitating the defendant or protecting the public.

These recommendations can include imprisonment, community service, probation, or participation in treatment programs.

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It provides the court with detailed information about the defendant’s personal circumstances, such as employment status, family ties, financial conditions, and any previous criminal history.

This information aids the judge in understanding the context of the defendant's actions and in making a more informed sentencing decision.

The judge is not bound to follow the recommendations of the pre-sentence report but usually gives them considerable weight.

The primary goal of the pre-sentence report is to enable a fair and individualised sentencing process that takes into account not only the severity of the offence but also the personal circumstances and rehabilitative needs of the defendant.

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