Why police want TV star Jacque Maribe to record statements over arrest of fiancé in murder probe

Joseph Kuria Irungu alias Jowie at Kiambu Law Courts over the murder of Monica Nyawira Kimani. [Kamau Maichuhie/Standard]

Police want to record a statement from a TV journalist whose fiancé was arrested on Tuesday in relation to the murder of a woman in Nairobi.

Homicide officers investigating the murder of Monicah Nyawira Kimani said they wanted Jacque Maribe to record a statement to clarify a number of issues that have emerged during their probe.

Ms Maribe’s fiancé, Joseph Kuria Irungu, is in police custody following Ms Kimani’s killing. The 28-year-old woman’s body was found in a bathtub in her house in Lamuria Apartments on the afternoon of Thursday, September 20. Her throat had been slit.

Police say the car Mr Irungu was driving when he was spotted in Kimani’s house before her body was discovered is registered in Maribe’s name.

The Toyota Allion saloon car has been detained by the investigators.

“She is not responding to our calls but we have left a message for her, requiring her to come for further clarification. Even her lawyer says she is not responding to calls,” said an officer.

Maribe did not report to her workplace yesterday.

Irungu was also driving the same car at about 1.30am on September 21, when he claimed to have been shot and wounded in the chest by a gunman who allegedly escaped on a motorbike outside their house.

On the night of September 20, Irungu had told police he had picked Maribe from a club in Kilimani and driven to their house in Royal Park estate, Langata.

Irungu told police they arrived in the estate at about 1.30am when he spotted three men standing outside.

Irungu told police he took Maribe into the house and went back to the gate to check what was happening. That is when he claims to have been shot.

Went back

Irungu said he went back to the house and told Maribe what had happened. Maribe told police she was drunk and drove him to Nairobi West Hospital where he was attended to and sent home.

The two also told police they went to Nairobi West Hospital and Langata Hospital the same night seeking treatment for the gunshot wound. But yesterday, one of their lawyers told a Kiambu court that the couple also went to Kijabe Mission Hospital.

Yesterday, lawyer Cliff Ombeta also said Maribe had asked him to represent her.

“Yes, she contacted us for representation but no comment for now,” Mr Ombeta replied when asked about her whereabouts.

Police want clarification on the events of that night.

Both Maribe and Irungu had initially said the attack occurred in the house but later said it was outside, according to police.

The officers say preliminary findings show no shooting incident was reported at the scene. Neighbours and guards told police they did not hear any gunshots.

Police are also waiting for a medical report to establish if Irungu’s chest injury was indeed caused by a bullet.

The two have been living together since July, when Irungu publicly proposed to her at an event they streamed live on Instagram.

When the detectives went back to the house on Tuesday evening in the company of Irungu, Maribe was not present. But when police had gone to arrest Irungu earlier, at 5am, she was in.

The team recovered a live bullet from under the bed, but not a pistol they said they had been informed that Irungu has been using at most shooting ranges in the city.

Police said he has been claiming to be a licensed gun holder but this is not the case.

Irungu has been a security guard for a private firm in Dubai and Afghanistan. His other engagements remain a mystery but locally, he provided private security for VIPs.

During a police parade on Tuesday, he was positively identified by four witnesses as the last man seen walking out of Kimani’s house on September 19.

Irungu was presented in court yesterday as police sought more time to hold him for investigations.