A Thika court has allowed police to detain a ward rep and his girlfriend for 10 days as investigations continue into their link to the murder of a 45-year-old Gerald Gachugu Gichuhi on Tuesday in Juja, Kiambu County. Mr Samuel Njenga, the member of Kiambu County Assembly representing Githobokoini ward in Gatundu North constituency, his girlfriend Julia Wambui, and three others, appeared before Thika Senior Resident Magistrate Margret Kurumbu on Thursday, and were charged with killing Gichuhi by hitting him with a blunt object on the forehead.
The accused did not take plea after the investigating officer, Mr Evans Kipter, told the court he needed more time to investigate the matter after it emerged that Gichuhi was killed in the home of Mr Njenga, who was with Ms Wambui -- who also happens to be Gichuhi’s ex-girlfriend -- and three others identified as Mr Stephen Macharia Njeri, Mr Alex Njihia Gathuri, and Ms Elizabeth Nyambura Macharia, who have been listed as the co-accused in the case.
Gichuhi was injured at Nginya’s Residence at West View Estate within Juja. He died as he was undergoing treatment at the Thika Level Five Hospital.
While pleading with the court not to release the suspects, the investigating officer told the court that freeing them would complicate the investigations into the murder, with the likelihood of the suspects interfering with or intimidating the witnesses who are yet to testify in court, and who responded to the alarm raised by Gichuhi, before rushing him to the hospital.
“The four were together at the home of the ward rep. There was a disagreement that resulted in a serious confrontation that saw the deceased hit on the forehead,” Mr Kipter told the court as he pleaded to be granted more days to conclude gathering evidence.
“We want to detain them for 14 days because investigations are ongoing and there is a high likelihood that the respondents will interfere with the witnesses. We also want to process the suspects as part of our investigations,” the investigating officer added.
“The application is allowed for 10 days and the matter will be mentioned on May 31, 2022. You all have a right to get legal representation if you wish to have and the children officer will check on the children belonging to Nyambura and Wambui,” ruled Ms Kurumbu.
Gichuhi’s body is preserved at the General Kago Funeral Home in Thika town, Kiambu, awaiting post-mortem.