• The death of Daniel Mutembei, 34 sparked violent protests on Saturday, April 8 that left one man shot dead in the town.
• The suspects behind the death of Mutembei obtained anticipatory bail that bars them from arresting and prosecuting them with murder.
Police authorities have explained why they have not arrested and charged five suspects linked to the death of a man in Chuka town, Tharaka Nithi County.
According to police, the suspects behind the death of Daniel Mutembei obtained anticipatory bail that bars them from arresting and prosecuting with murder.
Mutembei's death, 34 sparked violent protests on Saturday, April 8 that left one man shot dead in the town.
The man identified as Willis Mugambi and the local bodaboda chairman was shot and killed in the protest.
Police on the ground said they had established Mutembei was assaulted by five people on March 18, 2023, at about 9 pm.
He later mentioned the names of the people he claimed assaulted him. Mutembei died on March 19, at the Chuka Referral Hospital where he had been admitted.
“Before his death, he had mentioned Newton Mutwiri, John Gitari, Jadiel Kinyanjui, Kirimi Ngari, and Nyaga Gitari to be the ones who had assaulted him,” police said in a statement.
This prompted police to commence a search for the suspects.
Police said the suspects rushed to High Court in Chuka and filed an application criminal case number E007/2023 on March 27, 2023, seeking anticipatory orders which were granted at a bond of Sh500,000 each and the mention of the case was set on April 12, 2023.
This stopped police from taking action on the suspects. Police said they are investigating a murder case in the issue.
On April 8, a section of locals engaged police in running battles while barricading the road with a casket containing the body of Mutembei causing a traffic jam along Meru- Embu road.
Police said they used necessary force and removed the casket to the mortuary and in the process, 11 police officers were injured.
The statement by police said no member of the public was injured when they left the scene later in the afternoon.
We later learnt that one person namely Mugambi was injured and pronounced dead later at Chuka referral hospital.
This prompted more riots and looting in the town. Officials from the Independent Policing Oversight Authority arrived at the scene Sunday and commended their probe into the issue.
“The IPOA and police are working together to establish the cause of death and the person to be held responsible.”
More than 20 police officers have recorded statements over the issue and those who were issued with firearms have surrendered them for ballistic tests.
A postmortem exercise is planned on the body of Mugambi as part of the probe into the shooting.
Interior Cabinet Secretary (CS) Kithure Kindiki ordered a probe into the killing of the two villagers.
He vowed to bring the perpetrators linked to the death of two Chuka town locals to book following a protest.