Police have released a taxi driver who had been held in connection to the murder of Nation Media Group’s telephone operator Mildred Odira.
Kiambu Chief Magistrate Patricia Gichohi was informed by Senior State Counsel Christine Mbevi that the police lacked enough evidence to charge the taxi driver Mr David Junga Ochieng with the murder of Ms Odira. Mr Ochieng was the sole suspect in the murder case.
In the mention of the case, the counsel told the court that Mr Ochieng will be treated by police as a possible prosecution witness.
The prosecution were allowed by the magistrate to close the case and get a refund of KShs. 200,000 that had been paid as cash bail .
Ms Odira was last seen alive when a taxi picked her from her home in Kariobangi South in January this year supposedly to take her to the hospital. The taxi had been called by watchmen from her resident and was to take her to Ruaraka Uhai Neema Hospital after she fell sick at night. Relatives said Ms Odira had been on medication for diabetes and high blood pressure.
The taxi driver claimed he dropped her at the hospital and left. The hospital said they did not booked her at the facility even as the CCTV cameras recorded the taxi driving into the hospital at about 4.20 am and leaving at 5:57am.
Ms Odira’s body was later to be found at City Mortuary by her family with the records showing that she was brought in the same day she disappeared. Police said they collected her body by the roadside at Allsops/GSU underpass.
According to the brother, Ms Odira’s body had deep cuts on the forehead, neck and navel with the injuries looking like they had been inflicted with a sharp object. Her legs too had been crushed.
Femicide in Kenya is at an alarming level.
Data shows that between 1st January 2019 to 23rd April 2019 a total of 44 women have been murdered according to data from Counting Dead Women Kenya.
According to their count, this is the chronology of the women killed in Kenya
1. An unnamed woman’s body was found decomposing in Naivasha on Good Friday 2019. Her husband who is on the run is said to have hit her with a blunt object at the back of her heading, leading to her death.
2. Another woman, Amina Bakari, a volunteer with Red Cross was attacked with a panga as she closed her shop last Monday
3. Deputy OCS Likoni Police Station shot and killed Peninah Kaimenyi, a 25 year old woman at Lovely Bar in Mtongwe Mombasa County.
4. A woman named Mary Wambui, a mother of two children was stabbed to death by her estranged husband.
5. A 70 year old woman and her son were attacked and killed while ploughing their farm in Makueni County.
6. A Class Eight girl, Shyleen Mokeira was found in a thicket near her house, murdered with her body having injuries on the head and blood oozing from her nose. The neighbour’s son is the suspected perpetrator.
7. In Kakamega County, Daphine Maloba died after being stabbed on head with a knife as well as deep cuts on the thighs and her back. According to her brother, her hands were tied with a wire and a hammer placed on her private parts.
8. Again in Kakamega County, Khanali Mwonobe was stabbed on the neck and killed. Her husband is the suspect.
9. Nakuru Women’s Prison warder, Carol Chepchirchir’s body was found in the bushes after missing for a week.
10. A sixth-year Moi University medical student Ivy Wangechi was attacked and killed outside Moi Teaching and Referral hospital by an apparent stalker.