Two police officers who killed a woman at City Park in Nairobi in 2018 have been jailed for 7 years as family say police interfered with crucial evidence.
Justice Stella Mutuku sent William Chirchir and Godfrey Kirui to jail for the murder of Janet Waiyaki.
The judge declined a plea by the two who had prayed for a non-custodial sentence saying such a decision would not be proper given that a life was lost.
In her judgment, Justice Stella said; “I give doubt to the element of death. The offence is not that of murder but manslaughter.”
She found that there was no shooting inside the vehicle even though the officers acted unprofessionally and recklessly. But she says the officers used force contrary to the law.
The judge however further asserted that she was satisfied that the element of death has been proven. “There is no dispute that the accused persons fired at the moving vehicle.”
However, speaking to the press after sentencing, Janet’s brother Chris Waiyaki welcomed the decision of the court but said justice was not served as they would have wished.
He said it’s unfortunate that the real evidence in this matter was interfered with by police officers during investigations and that real culprits are walking free.
“The real murders are still out there enjoying freedom. I want to remind them that, in her grave, Janet will fight for her justice,” Chris said.
The officers had faced a murder charge but it was reduced to manslaughter by Justice Stella Mutuku who said that malice aforethought had not been established or proven.
“Fate of the two officers who were involved in the murder was diminished with the disappearance of pieces of crucial evidence, interference of the matter by the investigating officer hence the shift from murder to manslaughter, ” the brother insisted.
“When the bullet extracted from the body ends up not matching up with other bullets dispensed from same firearm, it means there was another weapon in play,” he claimed.
As much as he appreciates the judgement, he still believes that the culprits would have been charged for murder; not manslaughter.
“According to court system, justice has been served for manslaughter and not for Janet’s murder. I strongly believe that there is too much than meet-the-eye. It’s too unfortunate that the two officers have lost their jobs and will be serving 7 years for manslaughter, ” he added.