Advertisement

Suspect in police officer kidnapping escapes from custody

Monday May 18 2020
suspic

Suspects in the kidnapping of a police officer are arraigned at a Milimani court on May 15, 2020. PHOTO | RICHARD MUNGUTI | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By MARY WAMBUI KANYI
By RICHARD MUNGUTI

A Ugandan accused of kidnapping and possibly killing a Kenyan police officer in January escaped from custody in mysterious circumstances.

Martin Wasike, 27, was discovered missing from Kamukunji police cells in Nairobi on Thursday morning, two days after a Nairobi court directed that he be detained at the station alongside his co-accused for three weeks.

Kamukunji OCS said the suspect disappeared between Wednesday 3.30pm and Thursday 3.30am.

“No grilles were cut and no one was injured. He may have tricked someone and left,” an officer told the Saturday Nation.

Central police commander Mark Wanjala said a search for the suspect in Mathare slums, where a female friend used to host him, was conducted but did not yielded fruit.

“The search is ongoing. We are also investigating the circumstances under which he escaped custody. His co-accused did not escape; they are in custody,” he said.

Advertisement

BAIL OPPOSED

Mr Wasike, another Ugandan by the name Shariff Wanabwa and Phoebe Anido Andayi, from Busia County, are accused of kidnapping police constable Abel Misati on January 19 and being in possession of some of his stolen items, among them his mobile phone.

The phone was found on one of the trio in Eastleigh on April 17 by DCI detectives.

The investigating officer told the court on Wednesday there is a likelihood they will prefer more charges against the suspects.

The trio’s plea for bail was opposed by State prosecutor Winnie Moraa and the lawyer representing the officer's family, Mr Alfred Nyandieka.

Ms Moraa argued they might jump bail since they have no permanent residence and identification documents.

“The severe sentences pronounced in the charges they face are an incentive for the three to escape the wrath of the law,” Ms Moraa told the court.

MASTERMIND AT LARGE

Mr Nyandieka said the disappearance of the officer had caused his family a lot of stress and trauma, and urged the court not to release the three so that they can assist police in locating the officer.

“The three are a threat to the security of the public if they can kidnap a well-trained police officer whose whereabouts are yet to be established,” Mr Alfred Nyandieka, the officer’s family lawyer, told the court.

Another Ugandan believed to have been the mastermind of the abduction is being tracked down by police with the help of Interpol. The suspect is believed to have fled to Uganda.

In his ruling, Senior Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi ordered that the three be detained until June 2, when the investigating officer will inform the court whether there will be changes to the circumstances of the case.

Advertisement