Morgue attendant claims, 'heart and stomach' were stolen by pathologist

Piece by: star.writer

A government pathologist and two morgue attendants yesterday testified in a case in a which a former chief government pathologist is charged with stealing a man's heart.

The pathologist in charge of Meru Level 5 Hospital Dr Scholastica Kimani told Meru Senior Resident Magistrate Evans Mbicha that Dr Moses Njue disappeared with the heart and kidney of Benedict Karau.

She said that during the first autopsy conducted on March 12, 2015 at Nkubu Consolata Hospital mortuary by Dr Njue in her presence, the organs were taken for further investigations at the Government Chemist.

“He took away the organs as well as a stomach, blood and urine samples from the body of Benedict Karau to conduct further tests.” Kimani said in her testimony.

As per the law, Dr Njue was required to ask for consent from the family to take the organs, Kimani told the court.

She said a second post postmortem was conducted at Meru Funeral Home by Dr Johansen Odour, Dr Maingi, Dr Moses Njue, Dr Kiama and her. Family members were also present.

At the second autopsy, Dr Njue was accompanied by eight intern assistants. Two police officers, the hospital mortician, and four relatives of the deceased who identified the body were present, she said.

“The organs that were removed for tests during the first postmortem were not present. Dr Njue sought time to avail them, they were not,” Kimani told the court.

John Mutegi, who is a mortuary attendant at Nkubu Consolata Hospital recalled that on March 5, 2015, he washed Benedict Karau's body and preserved it till March 12, 2015.

“Dr Njue said some body parts needed to be taken to the Government Chemist. I brought two tins which he labelled. I then saw Njue carrying a black paper on his hands to his car. I never knew what it was,” Mutegi said.

Mary Karimi who worked as a mortuary attendant at Meru Funeral Home said the doctors who performed the second postmortem could not find the heart and kidney.

“We preserved the decomposing body for two weeks from March 10, 2015,” she said.

Dr Moses Njue was arraigned before Meru chief magistrate Lucy Ambasi on June 18 last year where he denied charges of stealing, removing and destroying a body part of a deceased person.

The former state officer was released on Sh500, 000 cash bail.

The court also issued summons to chief government pathologist Johansen Odour and Dr Sylvester Maingi.

The hearing will proceed on August 1, 2019.

-The Star