Inquest: Court To Decide On Death Of Man Shot By Police In Family Feud

A Magistrate’s Court is set to hear the circumstances under which a man was shot dead in a confrontation with police officers at his home in Nyamira County.

The public inquest follows an investigation into the death of Mr. Justine Okoyo Mokaya by the Independent Policing Oversight Authority.

By authorising the inquest, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions agreed with the Authority’s findings that blame would not be apportioned to a police officer who was in procession of a rifle from which a bullet was discharged, causing fatal injuries.

The August 24, 2018 incident happened at around 8pm at Rabaye village.

Earlier that day, Mr Mokaya, his two brothers and their parents had converged at the home for a meeting that was chaired by the area Chief.

The father had intended to subdivide the family land among the brothers but the meeting aborted after he brought in two other men and introduced them as his other sons from another marriage and would-be beneficiaries.

Later, the patriarch sought help at Marsaba North Administration Police headquarters where he reported that he needed security escort in order to access his home and salvage personal property because some of his sons had set it on fire.

Twenty-nine (29) rounds of ammunition were fired in a confrontation that erupted when the patriarch arrived accompanied by three police officers.

The fatality was caused by a single bullet wound in the head. The father and one of the officers also sustained injuries.

In response to IPOA investigation the ODPP wrote: “Upon perusal of the file, it is clear there was a physical altercation between the suspect (officer) and the deceased. The deceased attempted to disarm the suspect leading to his own fatal injury. The suspect in turn sustained physical injuries.”

“The random spreading of spent cartridges at the scene and the deceased sustaining one bullet wound despite being within close range of the suspect, a skilled and trained officer on use of firearms proves that his intention was not to shoot the deceased. The matter should be placed before a magistrate having competent jurisdiction to be disposed of by way of public inquest.”

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