THE army court martial sitting at Karugutu sub-county headquarters in Ntoroko district on Thursday sentenced a soldier to life imprisonment for murdering his girlfriend.
Court chaired by Col. Mark Kodoli, found that Lanse Cpl Francis Okello, 33, on July 6, 2008, murdered Esperance Kave after finding her with another man.
During cross-examination, Okello, a father of four, told court that he did not intend to kill Kave, but was provoked.
He said on the fateful day, he found Kave kissing another man identified as Steven Mugisha, in her bar. He admitted that after finding Kave with another man, he went back to the barracks, wore his uniform, picked his gun and returned to the trading centre. He found Mugisha holding Kave, provoking him to shoot.
â€œI shot Kave in the stomach with 17 bullets,â€Â Okello, who has been on remand at Mbarara central prison, told court.
Prosecution led by Captain Wilson Rubaranga told court that, the accused intended to kill, arguing that he shot her in the abdomen. â€œHe shot her in one of the most sensitive parts of the body a clear indication that he intended it,â€ Rubaranga said.
But the defence lawyer, Captain Andrew Kamya, maintained that Okello was provoked, intoxicated and did not intend to kill her.
While passing his ruling Col. Kodoli said: â€œThis court has found him guilty of murder and I therefore sentence him to life imprisonmentâ€.
Okello has served in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan and Somalia.
Soldier jailed for life for murder