MEMORIAL TUESDAY EVENING

Conservationist Stutchbury shot 6 times, died of excessive bleeding — autopsy

Postmortem shows two of the bullets hit her left upper limb and one on her right hand

In Summary

• Chief government pathologist Johansen Oduor said the shooting was at close range.

• The bullet wounds on her upper limbs indicated that she tried to fight off her killers

conservationist Joannah Stutchbury
conservationist Joannah Stutchbury

Conservationist Joannah Stutchbury was shot six times in the head and upper limbs, an autopsy has shown.

The 64-year-old woman was hit in the head three times and three times in the upper limbs, according to the autopsy done on Monday. 

Chief government pathologist Johansen Oduor said the shooting was at close range. The bullet wounds on her upper limbs indicated that she tried to fight off her killers. She also had bruises.

Stutchbury was attacked on July 15 about 150 metres from her home in Mushroom Gardens Estate, Kiambu county, witnesses said. Nothing was stolen from her.

The autopsy showed two of the bullets hit her left upper limb and one on her right hand.

Oduor said the presence of gun powder deposits on her flesh, which is known as tattooing, showed the shooting was at close range. A pistol was used.

She suffered a fractured skull and a bullet track was found in the brain.

Stutchbury also had a fractured jaw and a few missing teeth on her right jaw. Police attended the exercise.

In 2018, Stutchbury stopped a group that wanted to re-channel a wetland by creating an access road to the forest.

She and the Kenya Forest Service were taken to court by individuals who claimed they owned land in Kiambu Forest, which borders her home.

A photo taken of her seated on the bucket of an excavator that had been brought to clear the wetland, went viral, forcing the alleged land grabbers to abandon their mission.

On Friday, President Uhuru Kenyatta condemned the killing of the Kenyan environmentalist and ordered security agencies to hunt the perpetrators.

In his message of condolence to the family, relatives and friends, the President said his administration appreciates the contribution of Stuchburry to environmental conservation. 

“It is very sad, unfortunate and regrettable that bad people have senselessly taken away the life of Joanna Stuchburry in such a senseless manner.

"For the longest time, Joanna has been a steadfast champion for the conservation of our environment and is remembered for her relentless efforts to protect Kiambu forest from encroachment," the President said.

A virtual memorial service to celebrate the life of Stutchbury, organised by her family and other conservationists was scheduled for Tuesday from 6pm, officials said.

Those attending the virtual meeting were asked to wear green and hold a candle.

Police said no arrest had been made abut they were pursuing good leads. 

Some conservationists have said she was killed for her firm stance against the excision of Kiambu forests by private developers.

She was often threatened by grabbers.