For Raping 13-Year-Old, Police Officer Jailed for 20 Years

GBARNGA, Bong – Jonathan D. Kolenky, 40, an officer of the Liberia National Police assigned to Bong, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for raping a 13-year-old girl in Gbarnga.

According to the verdict, Kolenky raped the girl in February at the LNP’s headquarters in Gbarnga, where she sought refuge, fearing punishment from her mother.

The verdict reveals that the girl’s mother had attempted to beat her around 8:00 p.m. as punishment when she ran away from their home and went to the police station for protection.

Kolenky and another officer on duty that night asked the child to stay the night at the station. The officers said they would address her case the next morning.

Medical reports provided to the court during Kolenky’s prosecution revealed that he sexually abused the child during the night of her stay at the station.

The Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in Gbarnga passed the verdict in the rape case this past Friday, March 31, 2017. The trial jury found Kolenky guilty and Judge Boimah Kontoe sentenced him to prison.

Meanwhile, citizens phoning in on local radio stations have described the verdict as a victory and a huge achievement in Liberia’s fight against rape. They are hailing the justice system in Bong for the timely investigation the rape case.

Featured photo by Philip Singbah

Editor’s note: A previous version of this article incorrectly spelled Kolenky’s name.

Moses Bailey

Moses started his journalism career in 2010 as a reporter at Radio Gbarnga. In 2011, the Press Union of Liberia recognized him as the Human Rights Reporter of the Year. In 2017, he was the Development Reporter of the Year. He is also an Internews Health Journalism Fellow. Moses is also the regional coordinator for NAYMOTE-Liberia, an organization working with youth to promote democratic governance.

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