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Drama in Nyeri as sugarcane vendor shot by police, as police hunt down armed gang

By Job Weru and Lydiah Nyawira | August 2nd 2016

A sugarcane vendor was shot and seriously wounded by stray police bullets, as an alleged Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) officer wrestled and apprehended a robber who was being tracked by police officers in Nyeri yesterday evening.

The vendor, identified only as Dennis was going on his business along Baden Powell road in Nyeri town, unaware that police were pursuing the suspected robber who was among others who had allegedly attempted to rob traders at King'ong'o area.

The gang escaped towards Kiawara and Nyeri towns after residents raised alarm, unaware that a combined force of different units were on hot pursuit.

And upon reaching Baden Powell Park in Nyeri town, police were forced to open fire on the suspect who was walking comfortably along the park's fence, but obviously on high alert.

Blaring sirens woke up the usually calm town, as police vehicles pursuing the suspects horned out to calve their way in.

A police officer who sought anonymity said that police were forced to shoot after learning that the suspect intended to make his way into the usually busy Majengo estate.

"They learnt that the suspect was joining a usually busy estate, and they fired a warning shot, but the vendor got scared and run towards the opposite direction and he was accidentally hit by a stray bullet," said the officer.

And as the suspected robber fled towards Majengo, with bullets still renting the airs, he came across a woman whom he held-ostensibly as a human shield, but a KDF officer on plainclothes jumped into action and separated the thug from the woman.

The KDF officer easily pushed the woman off the suspect's hands, wrestled the suspect to the ground, subdued him and signaled the police who were still shooting to cease fire, and certainly handed him over to the police.

The suspect was escorted to Nyeri Central Police Station which was by yesterday evening a beehive of activity, with members of the public streaming in to catch a glimpse.

However, armed plainclothes police riding in an unmarked vehicle had a hard time leaving the scene where Dennis was shot, as members of the public barricaded their car, and demanded they first rush him to hospital.

The officers, who were believably pursuing other runaway suspects temporarily halted their mission and had to draw their weapons to disperse the crowds.

But another police land cruiser with blaring sirens reached the scene and took the victim to Nyeri County Referral Hospital, where he was admitted in critical condition.

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