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‘Serial killer’ case fails to start again

Tuesday August 13 2013

PHOTO | TOM OTIENO Mr Harrison Okumu, the man accused of killing more than five people, under tight security when he was arraigned at the Kisumu High Court on August 13, 2013.

PHOTO | TOM OTIENO Mr Harrison Okumu, the man accused of killing more than five people, under tight security when he was arraigned at the Kisumu High Court on August 13, 2013. The public jammed the courtroom taking his pictures and threatening to lynch him.  NATION MEDIA GROUP

By NATION CORRESPONDENT

The trial of the suspected Kisumu serial killer failed to start for the second day due to the absence of a lawyer and a medical report.

The suspect, Mr Harrison Okumu, alias Boyi could not take his plea as the court was informed that he was yet to be mentally examined and was not represented by a lawyer.

At one point, Mr Okumu attempted to address the court arguing that his predicament in the hands of the police was as a result of bad blood with some of his family members.

But presiding judge Hillary Chemitei however advised him not to speak, saying it was not the right forum to discuss the matter.

State Counsel Douglas Ogoti informed the court that the suspect had not been examined to find out if he is mentally stable.

He also urged the court to issue an order for the accused to get a lawyer.

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At least five bodies were exhumed from shallow graves outside the suspects home in the last one week.

He will take a plea on September 4.

Justice Chemitei ordered the High Court deputy registrar Phyllis Shinyada to appoint a lawyer for the suspect.

Mr Okumu’s appearance before the court created a buzz, with members of the public filling up the courtroom and taking shots of the suspect using their phones.

Handcuffed and guarded

Others outside the court room shouted at him, threatening to lynch him should they get hold of him.

The suspect was handcuffed and guarded by two armed plain-clothes policemen.

The courtroom was also guarded with more Administration Police officers than usual.

He was arrested last Wednesday in Mombasa. On the previous Saturday, he had been spotted in Kisumu’s Kondele estate but escaped in unclear circumstances.