Kenya: Hunt on for Gardener in Grisly Murder of Woman

Police in Wundanyi are looking for a gardener suspected to be behind the killing of a 45-year-old woman.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) detectives believe the woman's co-worker killed her in Kese before dumping the dismembered body parts in different locations.

Condoms and syringes

Police say they found the murder weapons, blood-stained clothes, condoms and syringes at the crime scene, raising the possibility that the woman could have been sexually assaulted.

The suspect is said to have secretly rented the house without the knowledge of his employer two months ago. The two used to stay at their employer's house.

Wundanyi DCI boss Richard Cheruiyot said the suspect is at large.

The torso of the domestic worker was found in Kese Township on Monday morning. Other body parts were found by a stream in a shallow grave.

The woman disappeared after leaving her workplace on Sunday. Her daughter, an only child, said her mother left to buy a toothbrush around 5pm but did not return.

Mr Cheruiyot said the motive of the killing has not been established.

Taita Taveta County Police Commander Patrick Okeri visited Kese on Wednesday afternoon. He held a meeting at Wundanyi Police Station following residents' complaints about theft, murder and other crimes.

Residents accuse police officers of being slow in responding to distress calls.

At the same time, local leaders have condemned the growing incidents of murder and rape in Wundanyi.

Nine women and girls have been raped and killed in Wundanyi since 2017. Three have been killed in Werugha village in just two months.

Another woman was reportedly raped in Mbale on Sunday.

Deputy Governor Majala Mlaghui, Woman Representative Lydia Haika, several ward reps and the civil society condemned the cases and demanded arrests.

Ms Mlaghui urged the government to ensure police are properly equipped to deal with insecurity.

"In some situations, police officers are willing to help, but lack the necessary resources," the deputy county boss said.

Rapists and burglars

Taita Taveta County Assembly Gender Committee chairperson Martha Kenio said police are not doing enough to arrest the killers, rapists and burglars.

"Most of these cases take place during curfew. Where are police officers then? Why haven't we seen arrests?" Ms Kenio posed.

"Even more baffling is that the crimes happen near the police station," she added.

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