NAIROBI DCI

Probe into murder of arrested man who bit cop's finger

IMLU says officers handcuffed him, beat him, hired a vehicle and dumped his body in River Nzoia

In Summary
  • Lusava was arrested by officers attached to Mbururu police post on October 7 and detained for allegedly having bitten a police officer's finger.
  • Ipoa is recording witness statements.
Ipoa chairperson Anne Makori and commissioner Doreen Muthaura during a press briefing IN Nairobi on January 22.
IPOA: Ipoa chairperson Anne Makori and commissioner Doreen Muthaura during a press briefing IN Nairobi on January 22.
Image: ANDREW KASUKU

Nairobi DCI homicide detectives will probe the disappearance and murder of a young Kakamega man arrested for allegedly biting a cop's finger.

Dennis Lusava was killed in Likuyani, Kakamega county. He went missing on October 7 after police said he had been released, but no one could find him.

The Independent Policing Oversight Authority is also investigating after his body was found floating in River Nzoia on Monday.

Lusava was arrested by officers attached to Mbururu police post on October 7 and detained for allegedly having bitten a police officer's finger, police sources told the Star. He went missing the same day.

Relatives could not find him at the station where officers on duty informed them that he had been released on police bond.

Angry villagers set the police post ablaze the following day and injured the Matunda police station OCS.

Twenty-three suspects have been arrested and charged in Eldoret with arson, assault and damage property.

On Wednesday police sources told the Star the Nairobi DCI homicide team was expected in Kakamega.

"The officers who were at the station on the fateful day have been booked by Ipoa to record statements," a senior police office said.

“The matter was taken up by our investigations team and is at preliminary stage of investigations. On completion, Ipoa will make appropriate recommendations to address the findings if culpability is found,” Ipoa chairperson Anne Makori said.

She said Ipoa already was recording witness statements.

Western regional police commander Perris Muthoni confirmed the involvement of the national homicide team but added the local DCI was also  investigating the murder.

The Independent Medico-Legal unit has accused the police of killing handcuffing and beating the suspect, then dumping his body in River Nzoia. It wants Ipoa to get to the bottom of the murder.

"We call for independent investigations into the circumstances behind the arrest, detention, torture, enforced disappearance and death of Dennis in police custody and expedited prosecution of officers found culpable," IMLU executive director Peter Kiama said.

He said Lusava was only one of 24 cases of people who have died in police custody or were killed by police since January. IMLU also wants the witnesses protection unit to ensure all witnesses are moved to safety.

Police sources said security has been increased after villagers threatened to burn the home of an policeman said to have lured the victim from his home before his arrest.

(Edited by V. Graham)