Olympic champion Wanjiru charged over threat to wife's life

Olympic marathon champion Samwel Wanjiru has been charged with threatening to kill his wife, Tereza Njeri, using an illegal firearm December 30, 2010. JOSEPH KURIA

Olympic marathon gold medallist Samuel Wanjiru was on Thursday charged with threatening to kill his wife, Tereza Njeri, with an illegal firearm.

The marathon champion was also charged with threatening to kill their househelp, Nancy Njoki, and wounding a security guard, Mr William Masinde.

Wanjiru denied the charges in a Nyahururu court and was released on a bond of Sh300,000, with a similar surety.

He is said to have committed the offences on Wednesday at his Muthaiga Estate home in Nyahururu Town.

Prosecutor John Ruto told the court that the renowned athlete hit Mr Masinde with a rifle butt on the cheek and on the right hand. The court heard that investigations were complete and five witnesses would testify.

The firearm has been forwarded to ballistics experts for analysis to determine whether or not it has been used to commit other offences.

Senior resident magistrate Alice Mong’are set January 9 for mention and the hearing on March 14 next year.

The athlete, a Chicago and London marathon champion, said through his lawyer Ndegwa Wahome that he had been framed.


Wanjiru spent Wednesday night in custody as a special team from Central Provincial Police headquarters conducted investigations. This was after he was allegedly found with an AK-47 rifle.

The multi-millionaire athlete was arrested after his wife told the police that he had threatened to kill her using the gun believed to have been illegally acquired. The wife escaped unhurt as the athlete allegedly struggled to open the main door.

He is said to have smashed the windows to his house with the muzzle of the rifle. The wife and the househelp fled into the guard house. They were later helped by the guard to hide in an incomplete building in the vast compound.

Mr Masinde told police that he sustained a bruise on his cheek and right hand during the 3am incident that left him shocked. He said he saw Wanjiru emerge from the house while accompanied by another woman.

The wife then escaped from the house and reported the matter at Nyahururu Police Station at 3.30am before her husband later drove into the station while accompanied by some of his friends.

Wanjiru’s wife remained at the station till 7pm. When she returned to her house she found Mr Wanjiru in the company of police officers.

“The wife clearly stated that her husband had a firearm, prompting a search in their house and it was recovered without a magazine,” said a police source who declined to be named.

“We want to establish where it was sourced from and we are likely to prefer more charges,” added the source.