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Suspects in Kianjokoma brothers’ murders want bodies exhumed

By Winfrey Owino | August 26th 2021

Six police officers suspected of killing two brothers in Embu at the Milimani Law Courts. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Six police officers accused of murdering two Embu brothers now want the siblings’ remains exhumed, and a fresh postmortem conducted.

The suspects, through their lawyer Danstan Omari, filed an application at the Milimani Law Courts on Thursday, August 26, seeking suspension of the prosecution to allow for fresh investigations.

“We want an inquest into the brothers’ deaths conducted before the suspects are formally charged. As a result, we are asking the court to issue an exhumation order and allow for fresh postmortem,” said Omari.

The lawyer maintains that Benson Njiru, 22, and Emmanuel Mutura, 19, succumbed to injuries after jumping out of a moving police van, a narrative that led to the transfers of Embu North OCPD Emily Ngaruiya and OCS Abdullahi Yaya.

A lawyer representing the brothers’ family, Muchangi Gichugu, told The Standard that they would oppose the suspects’ applications.

“The boys’ autopsies were conducted in the presence of police, the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU), the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA), lawyers, both private and government pathologists and representatives of the family. The examination, having been conducted in the presence of all these people, was credible. We shall, therefore, oppose any exhumation applications filed by the defence,” said Gichugu.

Omari says the autopsy findings that the brothers died of blunt force trauma “could be as a result of the fatal fall after jumping off the vehicle”.

The six officers accused of involvement in the siblings’ deaths are: Benson Mbuthia, Consolata Kariuki, Martin Wanyama, Lilian Cherono, Nicholus Sang, and James Mwaniki.

They are currently under 14-day detention at the Capitol Hill Police Station as investigations into their alleged involvement in the brothers’ deaths are finalised.

Mutura and Njiru died in controversial circumstances after police arrested them for allegedly flouting the dusk-to-dawn curfew on August 1 in Kianjokoma, Embu North in Embu County.

Their bodies would later be found at the Embu Level 5 Hospital morgue.

The brothers were buried on August 13 at their parents’ home in Kianjokoma, Embu County.

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