Dec 4, 2022

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

How a call from stolen phone led police to Murang’a robbery suspect

Julius Kamande Muchoki would have managed to steal 50 brand new smartphones and airtime cards worth Sh55,000 if he hadn’t succumbed to the “naivety” of using one of the phones for his personal use .

The phones were valued at Sh230,000.

He was suspected of violently robbing a merchant Were in Maragua, Murang’a County on April 23.

The complainant gave the officers an insert card containing the IMEI numbers of the stolen phones and the serial numbers of the credit cards and 100 sim cards.

The suspect had been unknown, unsuspected and off police radar for nearly a month, only to “donate” himself to Murang on Thursday. ‘a southern sleuth when he made the technological mistake of powering up one of the phones and fitting it with its sim card before approaching an electronics vendor in Thika Town.

According to Alexander Shikondi, the chief of the Murang’a South Police Department, the case officers had reached an impasse in solving the case.

“That up until 11am last Thursday when the IMEI of one of the stolen smartphones became active on our surveillance screens. It was reported to have been fitted with a Safaricom sim card and topped up with Sh100 credit. We caught up immediately contacted the Communications Authority to trace the device. We then dispatched a team to arrest the suspect using location coordinates in the city of Kabati,” he said.

Mr. Shikondi said the suspect had an egg contacted a merchant who was supposed to receive the loot.

“But we pounced on him…picked him like farmers pick coffee berries during harvest… with the wrapped loot and he is now being held as he is scheduled to appear in court on Monday,” he said.

Mr Shikondi said detectives would ask the court to send them to give more time to examine the suspect as he has an eye condition , who has been in and out of prison for the past 10 years and how he will be released was a matter of serious concern to us as the enforcement team,” said Mr. Shikondi.

He said, the regional security committee put pressure on the gang to be done with.

In the past few months, deals in of the city of Maragua, attacked residents even as 911 calls blocked security hotlines and complained that the thugs were operating from criminal bars, drugs and illegal brews from caves and safe houses of commercial sex workers.

Last Saturday, five thugs riding a motorcycle snatched a woman from another speeding Bodaboda as she was carrying money to a nearby bank, where she fell on hard tarmac and was hospitalized in critical condition is delivered. The gang fled with their money.

In the past few months, the gangs have fired shots in public three times – including an incident that took place 50 meters outside the Maragua police station – and last Sunday, when two Murang’a-based journalists were shot at twice near the Equatorial Company along the Kenol-Murang’a road.

County Commissioner Karuku Ngumo said, “Noting the turn of events, we are putting pressure on both our officers and the thugs.”

The District Police Commander, Mr. Ali Nuno , said: “Personally, I would like to know how my officials are dealing with the problem raised and what they are doing about it.”

At a public baraza held on Tuesday in Maragua City, Murang’a South Deputy County Commissioner Mr. Gitonga M urungi said his officers had the names and license plates involved in the criminal enterprise.