• At 10 pm on the aforesaid day, Ikua walked home where his wife Margaret Wangui Kimani served him supper in the living room before going to bed.
• Shortly after, the deceased was lying on his belly, with a fatal wound on the back of his head and he was on fire.
When Kimani Ikua of Murang'a County returned home from Ndakaini Trading Centre on the night of June 19, 2011, he did not know that it was his last.
At 10 pm on the aforesaid day, Ikua walked home where his wife Margaret Wangui Kimani served him supper in the living room before going to bed.
Shortly after, the deceased was lying on his belly, with a fatal wound on the back of his head and he was on fire.
His daughter woke up to the scene and on walking outside, found her mother, the convict, screaming.
The daughter had woken up her siblings of 12 and six years at the time, after seeing the fire.
A neighbour who testified said Wangui knocked at his door at 9:30 pm telling him that her husband was burning, prompting him to go to the scene and later file a report at Ndakaini police station.
He found that Ikua was indeed on fire but also had a wound on his head that was bleeding.
On June 20, 2011, the convict confessed to the arresting officer and a chief inspector that she had agreed with Henry Muturi Mwangi, who became her co-accused, that he would kill her husband for a fee of Sh100,000.
The payment was to be made after the death of the deceased.
Further, Wangui confessed that on the day of the crime, she heard Ikua crying from the living room and when she went to probe, she found him lying down while Muturi was holding a metal bar.
This led to her arrest and that of Muturi, who by the time the Court of Appeal heard the case, he had been acquitted.
A doctor who performed a post-mortem on the body of the deceased opined that he had died from multiple traumatic injuries on the head, neck and abdomen.
He said this caused cardio-respiratory arrest.
The trial court found that the prosecution which presented eight witnesses had proven its case beyond reasonable doubt.
Wangui was on October 4, 2016, sentenced to death for the murder of her husband.
The convict opted to appeal against the sentencing arguing that it was harsh considering that she was a first offender and had already served 10 years in prison.
She made the submissions dated May 11, 2023, to the Court of Appeal through her lawyer.
The state, however, opposed the appeal submitting that the judge had considered all the mitigation factors.
"... including the brutal nature of the execution of the murder; that the act was committed in the house of the deceased and that the children were present and have to live with the trauma that they were subjected to," the court said.
Court of Appeal Judges Asike-Makhadia, Sanakel Ole Kantai and Mwaniki Gachoka agreed that the trial judge had indeed taken the appellant's mitigation statements into consideration.
These included that Wangui was the surviving parent to her children, she had spent five years in jail pending the trial and that Ikua was murdered in cold blood in the same home as his children.
The sentence for murder is provided under section 204 of the Penal Code. which states that "Any person who is convicted of murder shall be sentenced to death."
The judges noted that Wangui was guilty of a "cold pre-mediated murder that is only good in movies and not in real life."
It ruled that since the trial court's decision was lawful, it could only interfere with it to the extent that instead of a death sentence, the appellate serves 35 years.
"Consequently, this appeal succeeds only to the extent that the death sentence that was imposed is hereby quashed and substituted with a sentence of 35 years which shall run from July 12, 2011, when the appellant was charged in court and stayed in custody throughout the trial," the court ruled.