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Villagers beat suspected chicken thieves to death, set their bodies on fire

Two suspected chicken thieves were on Wednesday night beaten to death and their bodies set on fire in Gitine village, Igoji East, Meru county.

The suspects are said to have been ambushed while cooking the chicken.

One of the suspects, Mwenda Abayo said to have escaped from Shimo la Tewa maximum prison a few years ago.

Angry villagers tied the suspects together using a wire, forced to imbibe petrol, then beat them up before setting them ablaze.

Catherine Gitari, a resident, said she heard young men chanting war cries at night but did not dare to venture outside, and trooped to the scene on Thursday morning to find the charred remains of the suspects.

“I heard war cries and at the moment didn’t know what was happening. We were shocked to find the bodies lying here,” she said.

Julius Gitonga, a village elder, said the area has been experiencing runaway insecurity and appealed to the government to build a police post to stem the crime wave.

He wants Gitine elevated into a location so that a chief’s camp with police can be set up.

Igoji East MCA John Paul Kireria, who visited the area, called for more police presence and urged residents to stop buying property suspected to be stolen.