Main suspect in murder of U.S-based Nyamira couple arrested

Residents mill around Edward and Grace Morema's house in Nyamakoroto village, Nyamira County. [Stanley Ongwae, Standard]

A man believed to be the main suspect in the murder of a U.S-based Nyamira couple at their Nyamakoroto home in March has been arrested.

The arrest of the 40-year-old suspect Denis Ondara brings an end to a four-day chase by the DCI detectives.

The directorate said Ondara was armed with a Ceska pistol loaded with 14 rounds of ammunition before he was arrested at the Isebania border in Migori County.

Also recovered from him was an assortment of tools that included assorted spanners, nuts, screwdrivers, and pliers; all used for breaking into parked vehicles.

The homicide detectives said the suspect is believed to be the mystery guest whom the couple, Edward Nyagechi Morema,62, and his wife Grace Mong’ina,58 had hosted in their house on the fateful night.

Detectives have been on the search after DCI boss Mohamed Amin ordered a thorough probe into the murder.

The couple had visited the country for holiday before they were found murdered at their Nyamakoroto palatial home with their hands and legs tied using binding wires and bodies lying in a pool of blood in different locations within the house.

While Mong’ina’s body was found in her bedroom in a pool of blood, Morema’s was recovered in the garage on the ground floor of the one-storey mansion.

An autopsy report released later by the government pathologist indicated that the two died as a result of strangulations and blunt object injuries on their heads and upper limbs.

The couple was buried in mid-April with family members calling for quick police action in bringing the perpetrators into book.

For a third month now since the gruesome murder occurred, detectives have been holding the couple’s 19-year-old househelp and the gardener whom the police said have been helping in the investigations.

Some of the items that were recovered from the suspect. [DCI, Twitter]

According to Masaba North Sub-County Police Commander Robert Ndambili, the suspect had executed the murder in a manner that left no footprints of the crime.

“The criminals had ensured they have left no evidence that could help in unraveling the murder. They had even taken away the family’s closed-circuit television video recorders,” Ndambili said.

The DCI said they received information about the suspect four days ago before they laid a trap after trailing him.

“The suspect had been spotted in Ruai where he had gone into hiding after the incident. The officers moved with speed and as they were closing in on him, he slipped their dragnet. But unknown to him, the determined sleuths had trailed him waiting for the right moment to strike,” the DCI wrote on its Twitter.

According to the directorate, the sleuths posing as hawkers along the border struck as the suspect tried to cross over to Tanzania.

The DCI said a two months of thorough scrutiny, research, and analysis by the Crime Research and Intelligence Bureau and the Cyber Forensics team from the DCI’s National Forensic Laboratory had actively placed the suspect at the scene of the murder on the night of the attack.

The suspect is also believed to be behind a spate of reported robbery with violence and murder incidents in Nairobi, Nyamira, Kisii, and Migori counties.

So far, 3 more suspects have been arrested in connection with the couple’s murder.

Ondara is being held by the detectives ahead of his arraignment in court on Monday.