A Harare City Council official who hired a sex worker and paid her $17 for her services before demanding his money back at gunpoint has been charged with armed robbery.
James Chitsa (45), the city’s human resources officer, appeared in court yesterday where it was alleged that he corked his pistol and threatened to shoot Sheilla Mawaridze if she refused to hand him back his money.
Out of fear, Mawaridze surrendered the money and was ordered to leave Trafalgar Court, where Chitsa lives. Chitsa appeared before magistrate Ms Barbara Chimboza and was not asked to plead to the charge.
He was remanded to May 22 on $50 bail with the State’s consent. Chitsa is being represented by Mr Jivas Mudimu.
Prosecuting, Ms Linda Gadzikwa alleged that on April 22 this year at around 2am, Mawaridze was at Razzle Night Club in the city centre when Chitsa approached her.
Chitsa is said to have solicited for sexual favours and proposed to have a one night stand with the 24-year-old woman. They agreed on a payment of $25 and Chitsa suggested that they go to his house, it is alleged. It is the State’s case that the two hired a taxi to Chitsa’s apartment at Trafalgar Court.
Mawaridze paid $3 for the taxi since the tax driver did not have ready change for Chitsa’s higher denominations. Upon arrival at Chitsa’s apartment, it is alleged that he negotiated with Mawaridze to slash the charge from $25 and she agreed to $17.
Chitsa gave Mawaridze the money and soon after the act, he allegedly told Mawaridze that he wanted to teach her a lesson, before taking a pistol from the dressing board drawer.
Chitsa, it is further alleged, demanded back his money while pointing the gun at Mawaridze. She refused to give him back the money and Chitsa corked his pistol which forced her to return the money out of fear.
Chitsa then ordered Mawaridze to dress up, before leading her out of his apartment. She went straight to the police where she reported the matter.-Herald