IN PURSUIT OF JUSTICE

Cops linked to student's murder ‘tried to tamper with murder weapon’

In Summary
  • Katana Kazungu was shot dead by police last  June while pushing a stalled truck.
  • As proof, Ipoa will produce three pistols – two Jerichos and a Sesca – the officers had during the night shooting.
Police constables Simeon Ayado and Amos Kipsang' at Malindi High Court on June 20, 2019.
Police constables Simeon Ayado and Amos Kipsang' at Malindi High Court on June 20, 2019.
Image: ERNEST CORNEL

The hearing of evidence into the murder of a 17-year-old Kilifi student will commence on September 26 and run for two consecutive days.

Eleven witnesses have been lined up in the case where rights' group Muslims for Human Rights (Muhuri) and the State have sued police constables Amos Kipsang’ and Simeon Ayodo for allegedly murdering Katana Kazungu.

A bullet killed Kazungu on July 26, last year, an autopsy report revealed.

 
 

The postmortem showed the killer-shot was at close range.

Prosecutor Babra Sombo told Malindi High Court Judge Reuben Githinji that the accused attempted to interfere with the evidence.

“The witnesses will tell this court how the accused tried to tamper with the murder weapon,” he said.

As proof, Mwea is set to produce three pistols – two Jerichos and a Sesca – the three officers had during the night shooting.

“She will show this court three magazines, 42 bullets, OB extracts, and a duty roster from Mariakani police station,” Sombo said.

Mwea will also show the court a copy of the arm-movement register from Mariakani police station and AP ward for June 25.

The bullet pierced Kazungu's back, passed through one side of the heart, and broke a rib before it exited through the stomach.

 

Kazungu was in a group of villagers that were pushing a stalled truck at Tsangatsini, Kaloleni when the three officers, including the accused, ambushed him and fired indiscriminately, the prosecution said.

Kazungu who was coming from a funeral anticipated a stipend when he helped push the vehicle that was transporting ballast.

Those to testify are the deceased's father Kazungu Fondo, truck owner Shem Oguka and driver Jordan Ojwang.

Others are businessman John Gishaga, ballistic expert, and a government pathologist will testify, 

Independent Policing Oversight Authority investigating officer Sarah Mwea and three quarry workers will attest against Kipsang’ and Ayodo who denied the murder charge. The officers are out, each on Sh1 million bond.

The defense said they were yet to identify their witnesses.

Prosecutor Babra Sombo, Muhuri officials and Kazungu's parents at Malindi High Court on June 20, 2019.
Prosecutor Babra Sombo, Muhuri officials and Kazungu's parents at Malindi High Court on June 20, 2019.
Image: ERNEST CORNEL
 

To further prove the accused were on duty, the investigating officer will give as exhibit a memo, police work ticket from Mariakani police station and Kaloleni Division for June 26.

Sombo said Gishaga, Ojwang’, quarry workers, and Oguka who were at the crime scene, can identify the officers who operated that fateful night.

According to the prosecution, Oguka gave his truck to Ojwang’ on June 25, and later reported it missing at Mariakani police station.

“He was given an OB number. He later traced the truck and was accompanied by three police in civilian clothes to where it was,” Sombo said.

“Oguka saw the officers with torches and firearms. When they arrived where the truck was, they found it being pushed from a mud. It had rained. Oguka saw the officers discharging their firearms and started shooting.”

Sombo said Oguka and Ojwang’ saw two people running, including Kazungu, before they heard four gunshots, some which felled the deceased.

The prosecution, Sombo said, will prove the officers’ lives were not in danger when they pulled their triggers.

“Ojwang’ heard one officer said in a phone call, ‘tumeangusha mmoja' (we have shot dead one person),” Sombo said, adding Ojwang’ had been ordered to lie on the ground.

The defense said they will show the officers did not cause Kazungu’s death. They said the group had pangas, axe and spade.


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