My lover tried to end her life after killing children, man tells court

Pherine Maero with her two children and estranged husband. [Courtesy]

The husband of a Kakamega nurse who is on trial in a double homicide charge of killing her two children on March 6, 2022, has given a detailed account of the murders, saying there could have been “in fact, a third death" on the same day.

Testifying before the High Court in Kakamega, Rodney Mitto said the nurse, Pherine Maero, hinted at committing suicide out of guilt just hours after she strangled to death the minors aged four and nine.

“I entered her house and as a procedure passed by the children’s bedroom just to ensure all was well. They appeared deep asleep but were not covered with the mosquito net so I unplugged the net and covered them with it then headed to her bedroom,” he said on Thursday afternoon.

“Their mother stood pensively in the bedroom and asked me what appeared to be a queer question: Are the children all right? I answered they were, well at least by their appearance, but their mother said they were not well. This pricked me to go back to their room to check.”

In the children’s room, Mitto uncovered them one after the other and tried to wake them but none appeared to be breathing. “They were cold,” he said, almost shedding tears.

He rushed to the wife and asked what had happened, and it is at this point he realised he was at a homicide scene and a third death could have occurred.

“My wife was unmoved, she looked at the panicky me and unwrapped a scarf that was tied around her neck. There was a terrifying bloody scar on the neck. She told me ‘I have very few days to live’ and that’s when it hit me that all was not well. I later learnt she wanted to take her life after strangling the children.”

Mitto, who is six years younger than Maero, said he managed to talk her out of the suicidal thoughts and walked downstairs to find the watchman of the apartment.

He would later call a friend who in turn telephoned the police and within a short while they (police) arrived at the scene and secured it.

When the police arrived, Mitto said they interrogated him and the watchman and left, while Maero was in the bedroom unconscious. She remained unconscious for four days at the Kakamega Referral Hospital ICU.

Mitto said that they had separated with Maero but often met when he came to check on the children like on the material day of the murders where Maero called him late in the night to go check on the children.

In a rebuttal Maero, who is represented by lawyer Derek Mango, said she was innocent of the murders and that it could be her former lover, Mitto who murdered the children.

She said that on the night of the murders, they had been on phone with Mitto as he directed her to different bars for drinks.

“He could have been luring me out of the house so that he finds time to enter and murder them,” she said.

But Mitto said the claim was false as he was heading to his parents' home when Maero called him to go check on the children. The hearing was adjourned to April 29,2024.

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