A Form Four student was among seven suspected Gaza gang members killed by police at Makutano Township on Tuesday.
The body of 18-year-old Stephen Macharia, a student at Twilight Secondary School, Nairobi was identified by his parents at Murang’a Hospital Mortuary.
Mr Joseph Gitonga and his family learnt of his son’s death when photos of the bodies began circulating on social media.
He said his son had never been a member of the gang that has been terrorising police officers and residents of Kayole and Dandora estates.
“Macharia has never been implicated in crime. My lovely boy has died like a dog just because he comes from Kayole,” a teary Mr Gitonga said at the mortuary.
He insisted that Macharia had never been involved in mischief at school or with the authorities.
Mr Gitonga his son was obedient, hardworking and brilliant in school, adding that he was the family’s only hope.
Police said detectives from the Special Crimes Prevention Unit had been trailing the seven who were believed to be on a robbery mission in Nyeri before they were intercepted and killed in a gun battle at Makutano.
Detectives also linked the seven to the killing of two police officers in Githunguri last month and several robberies in Nyeri, Murang’a and Kirinyaga counties.
They were also said to be members of a gang that was led by Michael Mwaniki who was killed by police alongside another suspected gangster last month. Mwaniki was described by police as a notorious criminal.
“We cannot specifically say what they were targeting but the gang was on a mission to commit a crime. A number of violent robberies have been committed by this gang,” Regional Police Commander Gideon Amala told the Nation.
Mr Gitonga, disputed the claims, saying the young men were heading to Nyeri for the burial of one of their friends. He said Macharia had notified him of the funeral.
Police said two homemade guns, a pistol and seven rounds of ammunition were found in the car used by the seven.
“My son had nothing to do with guns,” Mr Gitonga said, adding that Macharia was executed.
“He was shot in the throat at a close range. His hands showed that he had surrendered. The claim that the opened fire is unfounded,” Mr Gitonga said.
Additional reporting by Nicholas Komu