Mavhondo, aged 29, found himself on the wrong side of the law after he hopped behind the wheel of a running bus with no intentions of permanent ownership. Mavhondo, who had no money for bus fare, was later joined by an unwitting passenger, Christopher Dube.
Mavhondo initially pleaded guilty to the theft of the US$600,000 Kukura Kurerwa bus at the Magistrates Court. However, he changed his plea to not guilty after insisting that he never intended to permanently steal the bus.
According to Mavhondo, faced with a lack of bus fare, he embarked on a daring scheme to steal a bus. He discovered the bus with its engine running and keys in the ignition at the Mbare bus terminus. Seizing the opportunity, he took the wheel, fully intending to leave the bus with the keys near his destination.
The persecution stated that the incident occurred on May 2, 2023. On that fateful day, the shunting driver of the Kukura Kurerwa bus company had left the bus parked with the engine running and the ignition keys inside at the Mbare bus terminus.
Mavhondo drove the bus to Gokwe, where he left it parked at Masoro and went to visit his girlfriend. He left Dube in the bus. Meanwhile, the owner of the bus, assisted by two others, was on a mission to track down the stolen vehicle.
Around midnight, they located the bus and apprehended Dube, who was unaware Mavhondo stole the bus. Dube, upon his arrest, led the authorities to Mavhondo and they took him into custody.
Dube, who insists he was merely a passenger who knew nothing about the theft of the bus, revealed that Mavhondo offered him a ride after the latter had specifically asked for one passenger headed to Gokwe, a fact corroborated by Mavhondo during his testimony. Both men now face legal proceedings with diverging claims about their involvement in the unusual bus heist.