When Amina closed her miraa shop on a back street of Gilgil town, Nakuru County, on September 25, she did not imagine she would not get home.
She was attacked before reaching Ngomongo area where she resided, becoming the second woman to be killed by faceless criminals who have left women in the town in a panic.
Matters worsened on Thursday morning when two other women were maimed.
Residents who sought anonymity out of fear said they had been going home early to prevent encounters with the attacked.
"The women who were killed were accosted on their way home from work,” one said on Friday.
Resident Mary Wangui added: “One of the women who was attacked on Thursday morning is my friend. I went to visit her at the hospital."
She said her friend suffered a broken arm and serious head injuries in the attack at Marula area in Gilgil Sub-county.
Ms Wangui said the woman had been heading to work when she was accosted.
“She was saved by a boda boda operator who was near the scene,” she said.
The second woman was attacked at home. She was taken to the Gilgil hospital with injuries to her head.
Amina's friends said she was in a good mood when she closed her shop and that she was eager to rest after a long day at work
“We suspect she was raped. She had visible head and body injuries,” said Gilgil police boss Emmanuel Opuru.
On the Wednesday before that, the naked body of another murdered woman was found dumped at Kambi Maasai, along the busy Gilgil-Nakuru highway.
“We suspect she was also raped and the body doused in acid,” said Mr Opuru.
A month earlier, a man and woman were critically injured and dumped in a thicket. The man succumbed to his injuries at Gilgil Sub-county hospital.
The rise in the number of attacks prompted residents to protest on Friday by barricading several roads within the town center.
The protesters, who demanded action by police and claims serial killers were on the loose, were dispersed by anti-riot officers who lobbed tear gas canisters.
Gilgil Member of Parliament (MP) Martha Wangari decried "runaway crime".
“I am really perturbed by the state of insecurity in Gilgil town, especially where women are concerned," she said by phone from outside the country. "Last week, we held a meeting which brought together top brass security officers and deliberated on what needs to be done."
She urged residents to give police leads on the attackers.
The police boss said they were doing all they could to identify the faceless killers and arrest the situation.
“We have our ears on the ground and are doing all we can to bring to book those perpetrating the heinous act. Members of the public should volunteer information that can assist us with investigations,” Mr Opuru said.