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Uproar as policeman accused of defiling daughter roams free

Tuesday March 3 2020

defilement case

The 12-year-old girl from Migori County, who has accused her father of defiling her on November 1, 2019. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

IAN BYRON
By IAN BYRON
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Police in Isebania are on the spot over allegations that they have been reluctant to arrest and prosecute their colleague who is accused of defiling his daughter in December. Police also locked up the girl in cells to conceal evidence.

Locals say the suspect, who is on the run, often makes technical appearances in local pubs within the town and roams freely in the company of his colleagues.

They have appealed to Inspector-General of Police Hillary Mutyambai to intervene and bring the culprit to book.

'OUT OF COURT'

Locals accuse police of protecting a suspect despite the grave accusations levelled against him. A confidential source told the Nation that the officer is a common face at a famous entertainment spot in Awendo town.

The revelation comes as the suspect’s family seeks to negotiate with the 12-year-old victim’s guardians to settle the matter out of court.

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The guardian said officers from the Independent Police Oversight Authority (Ipoa) took the minor into witness protection at an undisclosed location after her plight was highlighted in December.

“They took her away to an undisclosed location. Since then, the suspect’s family has been pleading to have the matter settled without involving police,” said the guardian.

Kuria West police chief Bernard Muriuki said they were narrowing down on the 42-year-old suspect and will press fresh charges once he is found. Mr Muriuki said the suspect was constantly on the move, making it hard to catch him.

“We had established his hideout following a tip-off but he changed location. It seems there is someone feeding him with intelligence on police operations but we will soon catch up with him,” he said.

Mr Muriuki declined to comment on claims of a police cover-up.

In December 2019, the minor’s family had accused officers attached to Isebania Police Station of illegally locking up the girl after she went to report the defilement.

The girl claimed that her father defiled her on November 1 at their home in Nyabohanse after luring her into his bedroom. The man was arrested and later released in unclear circumstances. The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) wrote a letter seeking to dismiss the case, citing lack of evidence.

In a letter seen by the Nation dated November 5, Mr Martin Mwongera, a senior prosecution counsel in the ODPP, asked the Isebania Police Station commander to have the case terminated.

Local leaders have weighed in on the matter, calling for the speedy arrest and prosecution of the suspect.