The Lusaka Magistrates’ Court has ordered a 17-year-old boy of Lusaka’s Chilenje South to undergo counselling and rehabilitation for six months after stealing a 65-inch Samsung Plasma TV worth K21,000 from his neighbour’s house.

In this matter, the juvenile was facing one count of house-breaking and theft.

It was alleged that on January 15, 2019, the juvenile broke and entered into a dwelling house of Alexander Mwale and stole a Plasma TV valued at K21,000, property of Mwale.

He had pleaded guilty, adding that after he stole the TV, he took it to town and sold it at K5,000.

The matter came up before Magistrate Nsunge Chanda, Tuesday, for facts and sentencing.

Facts of the matter are that on the material day, the complainant, Mwale, left the house in the care of his son.

Upon heading back home, they were surprised to see from afar, that the grill door to their home was open.

Once in the house, they discovered that their 65-inch Samsung plasma TV was missing.

The complainant further discovered that the box for the TV, which was in the bedroom, was also missing.

The matter was then reported at Chilenje Police Station.

Asked whether he understood the facts, the juvenile offender replied in the affirmative.

In mitigation, the 17-year-old asked for forgiveness from the complainant, his family and the court, saying he would never engage in such acts again.

The juvenile also asked for maximum leniency, saying he just got his Grade 12 results and wanted to read law.

He said when he was in custody, he went through a lot.

“God spoke to me and was trying to tell me that if I don’t change my ways, that’s the type of life that I would live, in prison,” the juvenile said.

His father also asked the Court to exercise maximum leniency, saying even though he committed that offence, he was a good boy at home and had grown up very responsible.

In her ruling, Magistrate Chanda noted that the offence that the juvenile had committed was serious, adding that if he was able to steal that big TV, it meant that he was used to stealing.

She warned the juvenile to stop his criminal ways.

“The circumstances of the crime, where you are able to go and take a big TV like this one, this shows me that you have been stealing! Because if this was the first time, you can’t steal a big TV like this one, meaning you are used. So, can you change,” Magistrate Chanda said.

“Your father is saying that you have been raised as a good child, it takes some courage for someone to enter someone’s house and steal a TV and then later, book a taxi. It can’t be for the first time. That criminal mind should stop! If he comes back, he has to go and serve.”

Magistrate Chanda ordered that he goes for counselling and rehabilitation at Prison Care and Counselling Association (PRISCCA) for six months.