Police in Nairobi yesterday executed a 23-year-old man moments after he was saved from a lynch mob in Dagoretti. Villagers and relatives of Hastling Agesa said he was killed in cold blood by officers from Kabete Police Station who were fighting criminals on Nduaru Road in Dagoretti yesterday morning.
Witnesses said Agesa was shot dead while he hid behind a mabati house where he sought refuge after he was saved by villagers from the lynch mob. The mob killed two men believed to be robbers.
Police recovered a toy pistol from one of the lynched suspects. Yesterday, the Agesa's mother Christine Mbone disputed claims by Dagoretti police chief Mathew Gwiyo that her son was a robber.
She said her son was an innocent man killed by police in a case of mistaken identity. Agesa was shot dead about 500 metres from the spot where the two men were lynched.
Two other men whose identities were yet to be established by yesterday evening were shot by plain clothes officers on patrol. Members of the public burned their bodies.
Yesterday, the Dagoretti police chief said Agesa was among a group of four men who attacked a man as he was leaving his home in Dagoretti.
He said police were called and shot Agesa dead. Gwiyo said two of the suspects were lynched by the public while police shot dead one suspect. Another suspect managed to escape.
Paul Ochieng, who witnessed the incident, said Agesa and with two unidentified men were confronted by the police at a shopping centre on Nduaru Road.
Ochieng said the two unidentified men ran in different directions when police confronted them. They were arrested by members of the public who lynched them.
Ochieng said Agesa did not run away when police confronted them. He was handcuffed and left standing at the spot as police chased the two men.
According to Ochieng, Agesa was questioned by villagers who later lead him to his hideout after he told them that he was not a criminal.
Yesterday Mbone, 44, a mother of three sons, said Agesa left home at around 7.30am and headed to Nduaru Road where he was to pay rent for a house he planned to move into.
She said she received a call from a man who demanded to know if Agesa was her son and what he was doing on Nduaru Road.
She said the caller told her to go to Nduaru Road because her son had been arrested by police. Agesa who was heading to her place of work in Kangemi proceeded to Dagoretti where on arrival at around 8.15am, she was informed by villagers that her son had been shot by police and a toy pistol recovered from him.
Yesterday, she claimed that police had planted the toy gun on Agesa. A villager who did not wish to be named for fear of repercussions said Agesa was shot dead by a second group of uniformed officers who were called for reinforcement.
According to the witness, the uniformed officers who arrived at the scene at around 8am which was about 15 minutes after the CID officers had shot the first two suspects and left the scene.
The uniformed officers allegedly demanded to know from villagers where the third suspect (Agesa) was hiding. The witness said a boy of about 10 years told the police where Agesa was and the police shot him.
His body was then dragged to the spot where the other two men had been lynched. The bodies were later collected by a police car and taken to the City Mortuary.