Family rejects Kitengela church elder's Sh100,000 after plot to cover up defilement fails

Police in Kisii are pursuing a pastor who allegedly defiled a 10-year-old  girl in Nyaribari Chache constituency on January 27, 2024.

Photo credit: Photo I Pool

Attempts by a church elder accused of defiling a 14-year-old girl in Kitengela to offer the victim's family Sh100,000 to drop the case failed at the last minute on Saturday.

The Nation has learnt that negotiations between the victim's relatives and the said church elder, who is also a driver at Kitengela Glorious Gospel Centre and Glorious Group of Schools, entered the second day on April 13, 2024.

 According to the police report seen by the Nation, the 39-year-old suspect was picked by police officers and booked at Kitengela Police Station on April 12, 2024.

The church elder allegedly defiled the girl on April 8, 2024.

When Nation caught up with the victim's family spokesperson at Kitengela Police Station on Saturday afternoon, he explained that the Grade 8 pupil from Busia County had gone to Kitengela town to visit her sister during the April school holidays.

The sister, who does menial jobs, sent the victim to the church elder's house to help with household chores.

"The victim is my cousin. I became curious when she did not return home on April 8, 2023, only to be found at suspect's house around 8pm. We took her to the police station, she opened up about what happened before we took her to Nairobi Women's Hospital where the tests turned positive," he said.

Despite the seriousness of the crime, the family spokesman told Nation that he was negotiating with the church elder on behalf of the girl, her sister and their mother, who lives in Busia.

 The family spokesman accused some police officers of planning the negotiations. He claimed that in a well-orchestrated plan to bungle the case, the officers asked him to hand over the medical report from the hospital and the Occurrence Book (OB) number receipt he had received when he filed a formal complaint.

A telephone call to the pastor by the family's spokesman, in the presence of Nation, on Saturday afternoon indicated that negotiations were at an advanced stage. 

 "We started negotiations on Friday. We met the pastor for the first time at the police station in the presence of a female police officer. The second time we met at the church office and I was offered Sh100,000 to drop the case. I was willing to take Sh200,000 even though I knew it was dirty money," he said, adding that he received a phone call warning him not to involve the media in the matter.

When Nation caught up with the victim at her sister's rented house, she looked distraught. 

She said that she had been referred by her sister to wash clothes and clean the suspect's one-room house for a fee. She said the suspect lured her with lunch and the chance to watch television soap operas.

"After washing the clothes and cleaning the house, the man told me he loved me. He took advantage of me and promised to marry me after I finished my studies. I stayed in the house until my sister came to fetch me in the evening," she said.

She said she wanted to go back home and continue her studies as she was not ready to get married.

On Saturday evening, the negotiations ran into a headwind when the suspect realised that the media had got wind of their plan.

By 5pm, police had arrested the victim's sister, who had initially been involved in the 'negotiations'.

 Isinya Sub-County Police Commander Patrick Manyasi told the Nation that investigations had been launched and the suspect would be arraigned on Monday.

"The suspect is in custody awaiting arraignment on Monday for defilement. It's wrong for anyone to try to subvert justice, especially in a case of defilement," Mr Manyasi said.