October 2, 2013

INDIA: Man Gets Death For Raping And Killing A 7 Year Old Girl

The Times of India
written by Staff
Saturday September 28, 2013

MUMBAI - A sessions court on Friday sentenced a man to death for the rape and murder of a minor. Judge U S Joshi Phalke convicted Babasaheb Kamble (50) after observing that the crime, committed in October 2011 on a girl aged seven, fell in the 'rarest of rare' category and the accused had shown no remorse.

"The accused... has committed the act in the most gruesome manner and it shocks the conscience of society," the judge said. Children are soft targets and unlike adults they offer little or no resistance, she said.

Kamble, an autorickshaw driver, remained calm as the sentence was pronounced. The judge said his age ceased to be a mitigating circumstance regarding the punishment. "The evidence indicates that he was with the victim and took her to his house. Witnesses saw him with the victim," the judge said. The girl and Kamble were neighbours.

Investigating officer Raju Kasbe said the prosecution had examined 65 witnesses, including the girl's mother, neighbours, and medical and police officers.

The mother broke down in the court room as the verdict was delivered. "Though my loss is irreparable, I am happy the accused got what he deserved. I hope this acts as a deterrent," said the woman, who works as a domestic help; her husband is unemployed. The girl was the youngest of three.

The incident took place on the afternoon of October 28, 2011, in Kranti Nagar, a slum in Teen Dongri, Goregaon (West). The girl was playing outside her house. When she did not return home, her parents started looking for her. As she was untraceable for several hours, her family approached neighbours for help. The family looked inside Kamble's house as well, but did not spot anything amiss immediately. Again, at 6.20 pm, they went to his house. "The victim's sister was startled when she noticed a tiny hand sticking out from under Kamble's bed. She bent down and was horrified to find her sister lying motionless there," said a police officer.

The girl was taken to Siddharth Hospital, Goregaon, where she was declared dead. Her body was sent to Cooper Hospital for a post-mortem examination. Medical reports confirmed that Kamble had raped and strangled the child.

The neighbours caught Kamble and trashed him. The Goregaon police was called and Kamble arrested. The prosecution said Kamble had summoned the girl to his residence; he usually did so when he wanted her to run errands. Kamble's medical reports tested positive for alcohol consumption. He was booked for murder (in 2000) and also theft and burglary.

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