A sombre mood has engulfed Tutuma village in Mitunguu, Meru County after a former inmate was lynched by a mo, moments after he hacked his mother to death on Saturday.
The man identified as Daniel Mutuma had accosted his mother, Ms Alice Muthoni, as she went to fetch sugar to prepare breakfast and hacked her in the neck with a panga.
The blow sent the 70-year-old woman falling in a heap, before Mutuma slashed her several times, killing her instantly.
He then turned on Mr Patrick Muthaura, who witnessed the incident. But Mr Muthaura managed to escape while raising the alarm, attracting residents and forcing the man to lock himself in his house.
“She wanted to prepare tea so that we could have breakfast when she was attacked from behind. I heard her crying in anguish and I realised she had been slashed in the neck. When he spotted me, he wanted to attack me but I ran and raised the alarm,” Mr Muthaura narrated.
Tried to commit suicide
The man tried to commit suicide by setting his house on fire using a gas cylinder but dozens of irate residents who had gathered at the home broke into the house and put it out.
They then seized the man, dragged him outside the house where they beat him to a pulp, leaving him for the dead a few metres from his mother’s body.
Area manager Priscila Nkirote said the mother and son had a strained relationship and that the woman had on numerous occasions reported cases of threats to her life.
She said Ms Muthoni had welcomed her son with open arms after he served over 20 years in jail after being convicted of rape and assisted him to start life afresh.
Tormented his mother
However, Mutuma continued to torment his mother, forcing her to hire Mr Muthaura as a watchman so as to help ward off possible attacks.
Mr Muthaura said the mother kept pleading with her son to change his ways but things only got worse.
“The mother loved her son but he kept threatening to kill her and then commit suicide. She always lived in fear. I think that is why she hired me as a watchman,” he recounted.
Mr Henry Muriungi Sebastian, a local leader, said the incident had caused sorrow and fear among residents and urged parents to seek help from mediators when they have issues with their children.
He urged authorities to take matters seriously, saying if police had acted on time they would have saved the two lives.
Police from Mitunguu took the two bodies to Meru Level Five Hospital mortuary and collected the suspected killer weapon.