6 October 2017

Kenya: Cover-Up Bid After Policeman Defiles Pupil, 13, Inside Cell

A 13-year-old was defiled by a police officer guarding her inside a cell as administrators scrambled to cover up the beastly act by giving inconsistent information to the family and human rights organisations.

The Standard Eight Pupil at St Mary's Primary School in Murang'a was arrested on Friday last week by police who accused her of stealing clothes from a friend's house near Murang'a University.

She was remanded at Murang'a Police Station, where a police officer entered the cell at night, raped her and hurled a used condom on the roof of the station's toilets.

The teenager was on Monday charged with stealing clothes and handling stolen items but did not take a plea. After court proceedings, she was taken to the Murang'a remand home and was taken back to court on Tuesday where she denied the charges. She was not given a bail option and is still at the remand home until October 19, when the case will be heard.

SOCIAL MEDIA

The incident would have remained unknown to the world but for an inmate -- who had himself been locked up for obstructing police on duty -- who witnessed the officer clean himself up and throw the condom on the roof. When the inmate was released, he wrote of his disgust on social media, posting a video of the officer on Facebook, under the name Jeff Nelson G's post.

"We were six in the male cells and a juvenile in the ladies' cells who had been booked in for stealing," he said.

"On Saturday night, a male cop who seemed to be in his 30s walked in and switched the lights off.

"He then proceeded to the ladies' cells where the juvenile had been locked in alone. I peeped through the cells door and I could hear some murmurs and movement. I spent about ten minutes there only to see the same cop walking out while zipping up his trousers.

"He then proceeded to a tap near the toilets, pulled out the spent condom, cleaned himself up and threw the dirt above the toilets roof. He then went back to the OB desk and came back with a roll of toilet paper, which he handed over to the girl," he wrote.

He said he told the police officer to his face that he had seen what he had done to the girl.

SHOCKED OFFICER

The shocked officer, he said, started being kind to him.

"I managed to talk to the young girl who told me that the cop had promised to bail her out if she gave in to his demands.

"Early this morning, the cop checked out for his day off duty and left without a word. I was released at around 10am and as I left, the young girl was still in the cells faced with even more problems than just her case," the witness wrote.

On Wednesday, Nelson said he had received death threats, but said he did not fear the consequences of fighting for the rights of a young girl.

While communication sent to police headquarters by station head Job Njiru indicated that the officer responsible had been arrested, the Nation team found him on duty at the station yesterday.

Murang'a North police chief Johnstone Limo said no arrest had been made as police were still investigating the matter, adding that he learnt about the allegations on Facebook.

INFORMATION

"The moment we got the information, we launched the investigations to unmask the truth of the matter," said Mr Limo.

Police had given contradictory statements on the girl's age, saying she was 27 then changing it to 17. But her grandmother confirmed that the girl will turn 14 next month.

The girl was taken to hospital on Saturday but the test results had not been made available by the time of going to press last night.

At her grandmother's home at St Mary's village of Kiharu constituency in Murang'a last night, the old woman demanded the arrest and prosecution of the officer. The Nation team found her sweeping her mud-walled house.

"After hearing about the ordeal, we went to Murang'a Police station to inquire about the matter and we were informed by the police officers that they had started the investigations," she said and described the girl as obedient and disciplined, saying she was surprised at hearing she had been arrested for stealing.

"We have information that the alleged officer has not been arrested and we would like him to face the law," said the distraught grandmother.

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