Prophet arrested for rape threatens police with snake

A self-proclaimed Zimbabwean prophet accused of rape reportedly pulled a piece of magic on police officers by producing a live snake “out of the blue”.

Oscar Chimusoro from Rushinga district stunned officers when a puff udder slithered into Rushinga Police Station on Wednesday last week amid scenes of “pandemonium”, the Herald newspaper reported.

It remained unclear how the snake entered the police station, but the ‘prophet’ is said to have earlier threatened to “exercise his supernatural powers” against the police officers if the charges were not dropped.

“Business came to a standstill”, the paper said, “when police officers rushed into the charge office to catch a glimpse of the snake.”

Police had earlier driven to Chimusoro’s rural home to arrest him on allegations of raping a 17-year-old girl. But Chimusoro, a member of the Johane Masowe sect, refused a ride with the officers on religious grounds and offered to walk for 17km to the police station.

Mashonaland Central police spokesman Assistant Inspector Nicisson Kasoso said Chimusoro arrived at the station just after 7pm on the same day and was taken into the charge office, where he was interrogated.

During the interrogation Chimusoro suddenly went into a trance, Kasoso said.

He added: “He refused to answer questions saying he did not know anything about the rape case and asked the police to quiz his spirit. At the same time, he told the police that he was not keen to spend the night at the station and threatened to invoke his supernatural powers if they defied him.”

As he made his threats, the police spokesman said, the puff adder appeared, which Chimusoro claimed was proof of his ‘powers’.

Inspector Kasoso added: “Nobody saw the snake slithering into the charge office until after Chimusoro alerted us to its presence.”

The investigating officer then raised the alarm and officers raced to see the snake, the report said.

“The acting officer-in-charge ordered his subordinates to kill it despite Chimusoro’s pleas not to harm it,” the Herald reported.

But the junior officers still went on and killed the snake before burning it. Chimusoro was thrown into the cells.

He is due to appear in court soon.

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Religion News Blog posted this on Thursday April 26, 2007.
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