Police in Embu are investigating an incident in which a Kenya Forest Service (KFS) officer shot and killed his wife and then committed suicide following a domestic dispute.
According to Embu West police boss Charles Kinyua, detectives want to establish why the officer killed both his wife and himself in Koimugo village on Friday night.
The KFS officer, only identified as Justin Mutwiri, arrived home at around 8pm from work and picked up a quarrel with his wife, Christine Kagendo, for unknown reasons.
It was then that the officer took his gun and shot his wife in the head, killing her on the spot.
The officer then turned the same gun on himself.
Neighbours who responded to the sound of gunshots found the couple lying in pools of blood outside their rented house and fled in panic to inform the police.
Moments later, officers from the Embu West Police Station drove to the scene and removed the bodies to Embu Referral Hospital mortuary.
Residents said that the couple quarrelled for a few minutes before the shooting took place.
"We heard gunshots and ran to the scene to check what had happened only to find the lifeless bodies of the couple lying next to each other," one of the residents, Mary Wamunyu, recalled.
Another resident said gunshots were heard three kilometres away from the scene.
"We are still terrified following what transpired," another resident said.
Neighbours said the couple had a strained relationship prior to the incident which sent shockwaves across the entire village.
Mr Kinyua said the officer, who was based in Njukiri, used an AK-47 assault rifle to commit the crime.
He said he and his officers rushed to the scene on receiving the report and found both the officer and his wife dead.
“It is unfortunate we have lost two lives to domestic violence," he said, noting that the incident was the worst ever to happen in the area in recent times.
He advised officers to seek counselling when they disagree with their spouses instead of resorting to violence that leads to loss of lives.