Three sisters yesterday escaped the hangman’s noose after the High Court acquitted them of murdering their 80-year-old father over disputed property in Dagoretti, Nairobi county.
Justice Roselyn Korir ruled that the prosecution had failed to prove a prima facie case against Alice Makunyi, Christine Ng’endo and Agnes Nyambura. The judge said police conducted shoddy investigations on the death of Francis Waweru.
“I have considered the evidence on record. I have also considered the submissions tendered by the prosecution and the defence. It is my finding that the prosecution has not established a prima facie case against all three accused persons to warrant a conviction,” she said.
Makunyi, Ng’endo and Nyambura and their late mother Njeri had been charged with killing Waweru on January 6, 2013.
The judge said 13 witnesses who testified in support of the prosecution case alleged strained relations between the deceased and the accused. The pathologist testifying in the case also said Waweru died of multiple skull and rib fractures due to blunt force trauma.
According to the prosecution, a metal pipe said to be the murder weapon, was recovered from Nyambura’s bedroom.
Njeri, who died three months after the trial began, however, claimed her husband was killed by thugs who broke into their seven-bedroom house. But police found no sign of break in and suspected foul play within the family.
Prosecution had informed the court that Waweru lived with his wife and daughters but ordered them to vacate because of constant quarrels.
“He had even confided in one of his sons that he would move out if the others refused to leave. However, he was murdered before he could do so,” said the prosecution.
During the hearing, the three admitted to admitted wrangles in the family but denied having any intentions to murder their father.
“There were acrimonious times. He used to fight my mother a lot. One day, he broke her arm and leg. But we still loved our father and never wished him dead,” said Nyambura.