The nine-year-old daughter of a magistrate whose body was recovered on Monday was tortured and killed by her kidnappers shortly after demanding a ransom for her release, sources told the Nation.
The revelations came as leaders and lawyers led by Chief Justice David Maraga sent condolence messages to Githongo Law Courts Senior Resident Magistrate Carol Kemei whose daughter, was murdered.
The decomposing body of the class four pupil was spotted on Saturday evening by locals visiting a giant Meru Oak; a popular tourist attraction in Imenti forest, about three kilometres from Meru town.
According to a security officer who saw the body before it was removed from the scene, it had cuts on the thighs and one arm appeared to have been burnt with acid.
“The body was lying face down and a part of the head had no hair. One arm appeared to have been burnt,” the officer who sought anonymity said.
Police records indicate she was in school uniform at the time of the murder.
The girl went missing on September 6, 2018 at around 5pm after she was dropped by the school bus.
According to preliminary reports given to the police, the girl was picked by a man known to her near Total Petrol Station along the Meru town-Makutano road.
“The man called her and she rushed to him shouting ‘habari uncle’. There was no commotion hence her colleagues and those in nearby shops could not suspect anything sinister. Detectives have been questioning family members trying to unearth the motives of the kidnappers,” said North Imenti deputy county commissioner Isaac Masinde when Meru lawyers sought audience with him.
After the incident, the abductors demanded a ransom of Sh500,000 but never contacted the family again to follow up.
Meanwhile emotions ran high at the Meru Level Five Hospital Mortuary as family members of the deceased went to view the body.
The family members were accompanied by Justices Alfred Mabeya, Ann Onginjo and Magistrate Monicah Maruru as well as the school administrators.
In solidarity with the family, advocates practicing in Meru held peaceful demonstrations in the streets of Meru town before seeking audience with North Imenti deputy OCDP David Kavuu and Mr Masinde.
“We condemn the cowardly killing of the magistrate’s daughter. We demand to know how far the investigations have gone,” Mr Muriuki said.
Detectives have been pursuing leads in Kakamega and Naivasha from where the calls for ransom and messages have been traced.
One of those questioned by detectives include a relative of the deceased while police are pursuing someone said to have sent a message reporting the death of the girl.
“The body was discovered by tourists who informed Kenya Wildlife Service officers,” Mr Masinde said while terming the killing strange.
The deputy OCPD said two suspects were arrested last week and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations was probing the matter.
“We are working round the clock to ensure the perpetrators are brought to book. Investigations are ongoing and one of the suspects was arrested in Nairobi,” the OCPD said.
Chief Justice David Maraga and Law Society of Kenya President Allen Gichuhi have condemned the murder.
They have also demanded arrest of the killers.
Mr Gichuhi asked Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti to investigate the circumstances leading to the kidnapping and heinous murder of the young girl.
Justice Maraga said Interior Security Cabinet Minister Fred Matiang’i and Mr Kinoti had assured him that the killers will be apprehended.
“They have given me a firm assurance that everything is being done to bring the killers to book, “ he said.