Police in Embu County are pursuing a farmhand accused of raping and brutally murdering his employer's wife.
The victim, 44-year-old Lydia Syomiti, was on Wednesday morning found dead in the casual labourer's house at Njigo village in Mbeere South Sub-county.
It is believed that Syomiti, the wife of primary school teacher Jonah Ireri, was repeatedly raped and then strangled.
She was found in the bed naked and with her hands tied up.
Mr Ireri said he found his wife missing when he returned home from work on Tuesday.
He tried reaching her by phone but there was no response.
He then went to sleep, hoping Syomiti would show up but it was not so.
The following morning, Mr Ireri went to the suspect's house and called him but there was no answer.
Suspecting something was amiss, he pushed the door open, only to find his wife dead.
Shocked, Mr Ireri hurried to the nearby Kiritiri Police Station and reported the matter.
Moments later, police drove to the scene and took the body to Embu County Referral Hospital mortuary.
Area deputy police boss, Ms Iniviolata Lumati, said Syombiti's hands were tied up using a mosquito net.
Ms Lumati said it appeared the assailant ambushed the woman within the home and dragged her to his house, committed the crime and then escaped.
Describing the crime as the act of a beast, she vowed police will not rest until he is found and brought to book.
"We are tracking down the farmhand who escaped unnoticed. We shall catch up with him," she said, adding the motive for the crime was not immediately established.
Ms Lumati asked residents to be cautious when employing strangers.
"Some of the farmhands are criminals and should be thoroughly screened before being employed. Residents should ask job seekers all the necessary questions and even tell them to provide their identity cards to know exactly where they come from," she said.
Residents said the farmhand must be a hardcore criminal.
"He must be a very dangerous criminal because he killed his employer's wife just two days after he was hired," one said.