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Suspected thief lynched by mob in a remote Mwingi village

 A youthful man’s life has been cut short after a mob descended on him before setting him ablaze.

A police vehicle stands at the crime scene where a man was lynched by locals. Police moved the body to Mwingi Level Four Hospital morgue. Photo/MWINGI TIMES CORRESPONDENT

The man in his mid-twenties was in the early hours of Friday morning beaten before being burned beyond recognition in Mwingi West constituency, Kitui county.

The bizarre incident occurred at the remote village of Mulata-Utunda in Wikithuki location after locals accused the man of theft.

According to residents who spoke with Mwingi Times the man was working as a farm labourer in the area before he allegedly developed thievery behaviour. Locals also revealed that the suspect comes from the neighbouring Embu County.

“The guy is from an area called Katete which is in Mbeere South in Embu County. He has been crossing the river (Thaana) to come and do some menial jobs here. But recently he was suspected to be carrying out theft activities,” a local who sought anonymity said.

Another resident said the suspect was born in the area but relocated to Mbeere. “He was born here but they moved to Katete. He has even married here,” he confirmed.  

The area of the incidence is less than a kilometre from River Tana locally known as Thaana which separates Kitui and Embu counties.

According to the locals, the suspect had allegedly stolen an assortment of items from both homesteads and shops. They included Sh. 70,000, goats and a sewing machine. He said the victim was in the company of others who escaped and were even planning to break into some businessmen’s shops in the area.

Police have already visited the scene and taken the body to Mwingi Level Four Hospital morgue as probe commenced.

Crime has been on the rise in the area and its neighbourhoods for close to a decade now after police officers manning a police post at Kakongo market were withdrawn.

Organised crime

Last year Kakongo market, a rapidly growing market in Mwingi West, experienced a series of burglary activities ranging from theft of livestock, shop breakages and organized chaos and assault.

Sadly, some of the activities involved school going children. This publication can reliably reveal that most of these criminal offences happen in full glare of the local administrators who are reportedly reluctant to escalate them to the higher authorities.

Brewing and sale of an illicit brew locally known as Ndume Рmade from a fermented floor-like animal food substance has been the order of the day in some spots of Kakongo and Karura sub-locations. This has been ongoing even after the Interior Ministry Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangí ordered chiefs and their assistants to shut such dens last year.

Due to the proximity of the area to Mbeere and with River Thaana in between, most of the suspects go for hiding across in the pretext of looking for menial jobs in the Miraa farms.

STORY By MWINGI TIMES CORRESPONDENT

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