Officer who lobbed tear gas canister at Azimio rally arraigned in court

By , K24 Digital
On Fri, 1 Jul, 2022 17:32 | 2 mins read
Officer who discharged tear gas canister during Azimio rally arraigned.
Josephat Makori while in court. PHOTO/Viola Kosome

A police officer arrested for interrupting the Azimio La Umoja-One Kenya coalition rally in Kisii has been arraigned in court.

The officer, identified as Josephat Makori, was brought to Kisumu on Friday morning, where he appeared before Chief Magistrate Teresa Odera.

Makori is alleged to have lobbed the tear gas canister moments after the Coalition's running mate Martha Karua began addressing the crowd bringing the rally to an end.

He was charged with attempting to injure by explosive contrary to section 235 of the penal code.

The court heard that on Thursday, June 30, 2022, Makori detonated a teargas canister with intent to harm public members during the Azimio rally held at Gusii Stadium in Kisii county. He, however, pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutor defends the officer

Maureen Odumbe, the prosecutor handling the matter, informed the court that the safety of the accused was an issue of concern after being rescued from a mob baying for his blood.

In the interest of justice, she asked the court to detain him until the charged crowd had calmed down.

"We are only asking that he be detained so that the next time he appears in court, he is alive," she said.

On his part, Makori asked the court to release him on a free bond because he needed to attend to his sick wife.

He also told the court that he was roughed by a mob who hit his head, thighs, and knees.

"I am in pain and not feeling well. I even have hospital documents showing that I was treated. I am pleading with this court to release me on bond," he said.

The magistrate ruled that the accused be remanded at the Railway police station after she confirmed that he was unwell.

"This court can ensure the safety of an accused person; however, being that the prosecution has shown that the accused person is not guaranteed, I order that he be remanded for 10 days pending determination if he will be released on bond or not," she ruled.

The prosecution has lined up four witnesses to testify before the court. The matter will be mentioned on July 11 and heard on July 26.

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