By Harriet Chikandiwa

A 27-YEAR-OLD police officer appeared before a Harare magistrate on Thursday facing charges of malicious damage to property and theft of US$220.

Fidelis Katsande appeared before Harare magistrate Francis Mapfumo, who remanded him out of custody to November 5.

It is alleged that on June 19 this year, the complainant, Shupikai Round (35), a commuter omnibus operator, was driving along Mbuya Nehanda Street when he came across two Harare City Council trucks carrying Zimbabwe Republic Police officers and municipal cops pursuing vendors.

Katsande and his three alleged accomplices disembarked from one of the trucks and allegedly blocked the complainant’s commuter omnibus before smashing the kombi’s passenger window to force him to stop.

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It’s the State case that Round continued driving his vehicle and Katsande and his accomplice continued to smash the vehicle’s side windows, leading to the damage on six side windows and the rear screen.

Round was taken into police custody and Katsande allegedly extorted $400 from him.

After Round was released from custody, he discovered that his phone was missing.

He alleged that Katsande and his accomplice took his cell phone when they were effecting his arrest.

When Round was making a follow-up of his vehicle at VID Belvedere depot, he also discovered that Katsande and his accomplice had allegedly taken US$220 and a jacket, leading him to file a police report.

Delight Mauto represented the State.