The prime suspect in the murder of LGBTQ rights activist Edwin Kiprotich alias Chiloba went partying in various nightclubs in Eldoret town using money from the fashion model’s M-Pesa account immediately after his death, a court has heard.
State counsel Mark Mogun narrated to Eldoret High Court Judge Reuben Nyakundi that by the time Jacktone Odhiambo was being arrested after being linked to the heinous killing of Mr Chiloba, he was drunk after a night of fun using money from the deceased’s mobile wallet.
In his submissions to the court in the pre-trial hearing, Mr Mogun said Mr Odhiambo was behind the death of Chiloba, and the murder occurred at his Noble Breeze Apartment on the outskirts of Eldoret town.
“All circumstances point to the suspect as the main person who killed Edwin Kiprotich who was popularly known as Chiloba in his house where they were living together on the fateful night,” said Mr Mogun.
The two, according to Mr Mogun, had been living together as a couple for a year in the house Chiloba had lived in for four years.
Mr Odhiambo’s arrest, Mr Mogun informed the court, followed the January 3, 2022, discovery of a decomposed body of Chiloba that was stashed in a metallic box and dumped in the Kapsaret area, some 20 kilometres away from Eldoret town.
He implored the judge to hand down a death sentence against the prime suspect owing to what he said was overwhelming evidence they have against him in the case.
“This is a case of circumstantial evidence and we intend to bring 26 witnesses in the trial case since all evidence links the suspect to the brutal killing of the slain university student and fashion model,” Mr Mogun told the court.
Mr Odhiambo, who looked composed in the dock, is accused of killing Chiloba between December 31, 2022, and January 3, 2023, at Noble Breeze Apartment in Chebisas, Eldoret town.
The state counsel said that they have lined up 26 key witnesses among them primary and secondary school learners, and homicide experts.
Mr Odhiambo is represented by lawyer Mathai Maina while the victim’s family is represented by Gilbert Mitullah.
Addressing the packed court, Mr Mathai defended Mr Odhiambo saying that he had nothing to do with the murder.
“My client has many friends who had grudges against and used the sad incident to link him to the heinous killing of Chiloba who was his close friend,” argued Mr Mathai.
On his part, Mr Mitullah told the court that he had no doubts that Mr Odhiambo was the prime suspect in his client’s murder and urged the judge to send him to the gallows due to evidence and accounts from various witnesses adduced by people who saw him and the deceased before the discovery of his decomposed body.
The judge scheduled the hearing of the trial case on June 19, 20 and 21 when the learners will be given priority to testify against the suspect in connection with the murder of Chiloba.