alexa Police asked to probe rape suspect's release - Daily Nation

Police asked to probe rape suspect's release

Thursday April 27 2006

By MWANGI NDIRANGU

Police in Nyeri were yesterday ordered to investigate the circumstances under which a suspected rapist was freed after he allegedly paid money to his victim's parents.

Sources told the Nation that police commissioner Hussein Ali called Central provincial police boss Njue Njagi and demanded a detailed report on how the 44-year-old man was freed.

The suspect, an employee of a local water provider, was arrested on Thursday last week after a 14-year-old girl was defiled.

The assailant had gone to record readings of a water meter at the girl's home in Tetu when he allegedly attacked her.

Visit to police

On Monday, the suspect's relatives plus the girl's parents visited the office of a senior police officer and a few hours later the suspect was released.

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The parents walked away with Sh30,000, while the police officer pocketed Sh15,000, said the girl's relative, who was present during the negotiations.

Yesterday, Central provincial CID boss Sebastian Ndaru, confirmed that he had questioned some senior police officers at the station.

He said: "We are investigating the whole issue, from the time the rape suspect was arrested up to the time of his release."

Rights' groups

The release of the suspect has drawn a chorus of condemnation from the provincial administration and human rights groups.

Tetu district officer Maurice Raria said it was not the first time a rape suspect was being released in unclear circumstances.

And the coordinator of Mt Kenya Human Rights Watch, Mr Baragu Mutahi, described Nyeri Police Station as a haven of corruption and called on Maj-Gen Ali to transfer some senior officers who had overstayed at the station.

The executive director of Cradle, a children's rights organisation, Ms Millie Odhiambo, called for the arrest and prosecution of the suspect, the parents and the police officers involved.