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Dismissed warder in city illegal arrests, case in rising police impersonations

Eugene Shivachi Masaka, who was arrested on Monday by police officers attached and his details recorded showing he is a prisons warder was dismissed from the service a year ago.

Masaka, who was arrested alongside two other officers identified as Administration Police officer Cliff Ombati Okemwa and Kenya Army soldier Ben Ashiundu attached to Lang’ata Barracks, was dismissed from the service on July 24, 2020.

Daily Nation has established he had been attached to Wajir Prisons before he was dismissed on account of desertion.

“We wish to inform all members of staff to be on the lookout lest they may be conned by the officer,” read a signal that was released after he handed over Government kits.

In a signal from Officer-In-Charge of Wajir Prison to the Commissioner General of Prisons dated October 29, 2020, it was noted that Masaka returned all the kits but failed to hand over his Certificate of Appointment, which was issued to him while he was employed.

In addition, Masaka has a pending criminal case which kicked off even before he was dismissed from the service.

On Monday, he was one of three officers who were arrested for harassing a rider and impounding his motorcycle along City Hall Way in the Nairobi city center and reportedly demanded a bribe for them to release it.

A passerby then alerted two police officers on patrol nearby but the trio resisted when accosted and beat and seriously injured the two before members of the public helped to subdue them.

This comes amid rising cases of fake and former police officers masquerade as police officers and harass and extort unsuspecting members of the public.

On March 27, a fake cop identified as Gregory Simiyu was arrested while dressed in full police uniform as he conducted self-assigned night patrols in Lang’ata area, Nairobi.

Police said the 40-year-old was donning uniforms belonging to an Administration Police officer and after his arrest, police said he was part of a gang that has been posing as police officers and stealing from members of the public.

Police expressed surprise at how the suspect was comfortably operating outside, including past curfew hours as he was arrested a few minutes past midnight.

“He was obtaining money from members of the public as he harassed them and in some cases he even stole from civilians,” Benjamin Mwanthi the Langata police boss said.

In another case, Wycliffe Vincent Oduor, a suspect in a Sh72 million bank heist at Standard Chartered bank in Nairobi West, was shot by police following a reported robbery in Kayole, Nairobi in 2019.

However, neighbors said Oduor was not a police officer but had access to uniform and guns was picked by plain-clothed officers from a barber shop and shot dead in cold blood.

He reportedly dined and struck deals with police officers before the bank heist and on his death, police said he was part of a three-person gang that fled the scene using a motorbike.

In July 2020, police in Kayole nabbed seven civilians who were reported to be harassing members of the public while posing as police officers with radio calls and effecting arrests.

Still in August 2020, Augustine Khakhina Okumu was charged in court for arresting city residents who urinated on walls and fences.

Okumu was charged with impersonation after he was arrested on Ronald Ngala Street while forcing two men he had illegally handcuffed to board a private vehicle.

In the same month, police in Buruburu arrested Stanley Maina alias Francis Kangethe for conning members of the public by purporting to be investigating cases against them.

He was charged at the Makadara law courts with five counts of obtaining cash by false pretences and also impersonating a police officer.

Daily Nation has established that such officers are usually charged with being in unlawful possession of government stores contrary to Section 324 (2) and also impersonating a police officer which is contrary to Section 101 (1)(b) of the National Police Service Act.