Two more police officers have been placed in custody over the controversial death of two brothers who had been arrested for flouting the curfew in Embu.
This is as the Nation learnt that the grandmother of Emmanuel Mutura and Benson Njiru has also died, barely a week after the two brothers were buried.
Gladys Embu, 94, fell ill soon after the burial of her grandsons on August 13, and was taken to Runyenjes Hospital for treatment. According to the family, she may have fallen into depression.
"When the brothers who died in the hands of the police were laid to rest, their grandmother stopped talking to anyone. Moments later, our granny started foaming at the mouth and was rushed to the hospital, but sadly, she passed on," said family spokesman Felix Nthiga yesterday.
Mr Nthiga said the elderly woman loved her grandsons and their deaths shocked her.
The brothers, Benson, 22, and Emmanuel,19, were walking home from Mbui Njeru market on the night of August 1, after closing their pork butchery, when they were arrested by police and bundled into a GK vehicle for allegedly violating curfew rules. Two days later, their bodies were found in a mortuary. A post-mortem revealed that the brothers died due to head and rib injuries inflicted with a blunt object.
Two separate investigations on who killed them are now gathering pace.
Witnesses have recorded statements with the Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) and the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (Ipoa).
Emmanuel and Benson had just opened a pork butchery at Kianjokoma market on the day they disappeared.
Emmanuel was a law student at the Kabarak University while Benson, had just graduated with a certificate in electrical and solar engineering from the Don Bosco Training Institute in Karen.
Their parents had, however, started for them a pork butchery to keep them busy and also earn them some pocket money. The butchery opened its doors on the same day the two brothers were arrested.
Six police officers had initially been interdicted and arrested as suspects.
"It bears repeating that law enforcement officials have a duty to comply with all constitutional requirements as to human rights and freedoms of persons in their custody while in the course of maintaining law and order," said the Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Hajji last week.
Police officers Benson Mbuthia, Consolata Kariuki, Lilian Cherono, Martin Wanyama, Nicholas Sang and James Mwaniki were last week remanded to pave way for investigations.
The six officers from Manyatta Police Station, who are said to have been directly involved in the arrest of the brothers, were yesterday taken for a mental assessment at the Mathari Hospital.
Preliminary investigations show that Mr Sang, Mr Wanyama and Ms Cherono rode in the back of the police Land Cruiser carrying 10 people -- including the two brothers -- who had been arrested that night.
The vehicle was being driven by Mr Mwaniki. The front cabin had Mr Mbuthia and Mr Kariuki.
However, Emmanuel and Benson were not booked in the cells of Manyatta Police station like the other suspects.
The brothers remained in the police vehicle at the parking lot. Shortly thereafter, the vehicle left for Karau Police Post, a few kilometres away.
What transpired between Manyatta Police Post and Karau is what Ipoa and IAU investigative teams are trying to establish, before forwarding to the DPP the names of officers that should be charged with murder.
Also in trouble is the former Manyatta OCS Abdullahi Yaya, whom the DPP last week directed should be interdicted.
Investigative agencies now think that the OCS lied in his official report about the incident, in a bid to cover up for his officers.
"It happened that two unknown prisoners, names unknown, of about 25 years of age, opened the police vehicle left side and jumped out without being noticed, 35 metres apart, both dying on the spot," said the OCS in his report.
How did two grown men jump from a police vehicle without being noticed by the three officers who were with them in the back? Additionally, did the police drive off, only to realise later that their prisoners had died on the spot later on? Investigators will seek the answers to these questions.
The eight officers in custody are expected to be presented in court early next week.