THE COURT RELEASED HIM

Suspected killer of Embu couple lynched

Kinyua was found resting in his parents' house after he and other suspects were released the previous day.

In Summary

•They dragged him out and descended on him, battering him ruthlessly with crude objects and killed him.

•The thugs murdered the couple on October 14 at night as their children listened in horror.

Villagers set ablaze a house belonging to parents of Daniel Kinyua, who was among seven suspects arrested over the murder of a couple, Joseph Kinyua and wife Kaari, at Kathakame village, Embu West sub-county.
Villagers set ablaze a house belonging to parents of Daniel Kinyua, who was among seven suspects arrested over the murder of a couple, Joseph Kinyua and wife Kaari, at Kathakame village, Embu West sub-county.
Image: Reuben Githinji

@githinjireuben

Angry villagers have lynched one of the seven suspects accused of killing an Embu couple.

The enraged residents demonstrated in Kithimu Town on Thursday, a day after an Embu court released Daniel Kinyua and six other suspects arrested in connection with a grisly murder of business couple Joseph Gitonga and his wife Caroline Kaari, for lack of evidence.

They traced Kinyua at his parent’s residence at Kimangaru Village.

He was found him resting in the stone house after release from police custody, where he was held for seven days.

They dragged him out and descended on him, battering him ruthlessly with crude objects and killed him.

The then piled dry wood and placed a tyre on his body and lit it up as they cerebrated.

Meanwhile, other residents torched the parent's house while others removed movables and lit them up.

Some descended on domestic animals including rabbits and goats and killed them while others descended on the farm and destroyed crops before leaving.

The residents were particularly infuriated after recovering blood-stained bed sheets, window curtain and a TV set that belonged to the murdered couple. Knives suspected to have been used to murder them were also found.

The villagers removed the bedsheet and marched in the village waving it and shouting slogans against the police, wondering what other evidence they needed to prosecute the suspect if the bed sheet and the other items were not enough.

The residents vowed to hunt down the other suspects and lynch them if the police did not re-arrest and prosecute them immediately.

The police arrived  later and moved the body to the Embu Level Five Teaching and Referral Hospital’s morgue.

The residents express displeasure with the 'incompetent' way Embu West DCI conducted investigations and failed to link the suspects to the couple’s murder.

The DCIO on Wednesday asked the court to release the seven: Kelvin Gitonga,  Boniface Gitonga, Dennis Munene, James Gitonga Muriuki, Joseph Ndwiga, the deceased Daniel Kinyua and Michael Gitonga Mbogo for lack of evidence after they appeared before Senior Principal Magistrate Henry Nyakweba. They were set free unconditionally .

However, Kelvin Gitonga, Boniface Gitonga and Dennis Munene remained in custody after being found in possession of bhang.

The couple was murdered on October 14 at night by robbers as their children listened in horror.

Gitonga and Caroline were reportedly clobbered to death at different times by robbers on at Kathakame Village in Kithimu Ward, Embu West Sub-county at around 11pm.

The robbers first ambushed the woman and tied her with ropes before locking up her two daughters in a room.

They clobbered her to death as the children listened as she  groaned in pain. They then waited for her husband in the house and killed him when he arrived.

Residents watch as property belonging to Daniel Kinyua's family is set ablaze.
Residents watch as property belonging to Daniel Kinyua's family is set ablaze.
Image: Reuben Githinji