What you need to know:
- Evans Wanjala Juma, who escaped the police drag net for more than two years, was arrested on June 16 after CCTV footage showed him in the company of his latest victim, 13-year-old Linda Cherono
The Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has revealed the identity of the suspect behind bizarre killings of minors in Moi’s Bridge.
Mr Evans Juma Wanjala, who evaded arrest for more than two years, was arrested on June 16 after CCTV footage showed him in the company of his latest victim, 13-year-old Linda Cherono.
Via its social media channels on Saturday, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) gave a report in which it identified the man as Evans Wanjala Juma.
The DCI said he committed the crimes between December 31, 2019 and June 15, meaning he escaped the police drag net for more than two years.
Earlier, residents had told journalists that the suspect was a familiar person but that his home of origin was not well known.
It is said Mr Juma had been targeting young girls under the age of 15.
“The minors all aged between the age of 10 and 15 were lured by the suspect from different locations within Moi’s Bridge in Uasin-Gishu county, before being taken to secluded areas where he defiled and strangled them,” the DCI said.
The DCI further said detectives established that Mr Juma is a “habitual offender with pending warrants of arrest against him”.
It said that in 2018, he defiled two minors in Kibwezi and was arraigned but released on bond.
“After his release he immediately went into hiding prompting a warrant of arrest to be issued against him by the Makindu Law Courts.”
In killings that appear similar to those reported in Nairobi, linked to self-confessed serial killer Masten Milimu Wanjala, Mr Juma on Wednesday took detectives to five crime scenes in Moi’s Bridge — the sprawling township on the border of Uasin Gishu, Trans Nzoia, and Kakamega.
He guided a team of detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the homicide department and forensics experts from Nairobi who were in the company of senior detectives from Uasin Gishu County.
“He told us whenever he kills the minors he feels relieved and at peace,” an officer said on condition of anonymity.
Most of the scenes the suspect took the detectives to were thickets near maize plantations and pools of water. At the locations, detectives collected evidence that will help with Mr Juma’s prosecution once he is arraigned.
In what was yet another case of horrifying child kidnappings and killings, Mr Juma narrated how he murdered the five minors.
"During the re-enactment, homicide detectives, augmented by their scenes of crime, and photographic and acoustics counterparts, documented forensically each of the five murder scenes, as the executioner demonstrated how he abducted, defiled, murdered and dumped the bodies of the minors," the DCI said.
Cherono went missing on June 11, only for her body to be found on June 15 near Baharini dam, behind the premises of the National Cereals and Produce Board in Moi's Bridge.
Njeri, 12 disappeared on May 21, 2020 and her body was found on June 18, 2020, at Soronoi farm.
Nabiso went missing on December 31, 2019 while her body recovered from River Nzoia on January 1, 2020.
Elusa was defiled and murdered after going missing on December 19, 2020, while Wanjiru was defiled and killed on January 16.
Post-mortem examination of all the minors revealed they were defiled before being killed. Some of their bodies were hidden in sacks.
This weekend, distraught families relived the horrors of their children’s deaths yet again after a team of forensic detectives from the homicide unit of the DCI visited the five crime scenes, some 10 kilometres apart, as they pieced together crucial evidence to send the suspect to jail.
The parents accompanied detectives and a contingent of police officers to the scenes as the suspect gave accounts of the macabre acts he said he committed.
Two weeks ago, an Eldoret court allowed police to detain the suspect for 21 days for further investigations.
Uasin Gishu County Police Commander Ayub Ali said he will be taken to court next week and charged with murder.