CID officer arrested over threat

January 31, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 31- An officer attached to the Criminal Investigations Department was arrested on Sunday night when he drew his gun and threatened to shoot a taxi driver in Nairobi.

The officer had boarded the vehicle from the Industrial area to South B but when the taxi driver asked to be paid, he reportedly declined, prompting the taxi driver to stop the car near the Industrial area prison.

It took the intervention of warders at the prison facility to shoot in the air before the officer surrendered.

"The warders initially thought he was a criminal, but he quickly identified himself when they subdued him," a police officer said.

"They almost shot at him but he finally handed over his pistol before he was escorted to the police station.

Fellow police officers at the industrial police station are reported to have been shocked to see their colleague being brought in handcuffs yet he had left the station a free man.

"That is when the warders and the taxi driver explained what had happened. He had declined to pay and even threatened to shoot the taxi driver," our source added.

"He could not be interrogated on Sunday night because he was too drunk. They had to wait until Monday," the source added.

On Monday, the taxi driver recorded a statement with detectives at the Industrial area police station as detectives finalised plans to arraign the officer in court.

A senior police officer told Capital News the officer was likely to face charges of misusing a firearm or a more serious offence of attempted murder.

Makadara divisional police chief Thomas Atuti under whose jurisdiction the area where the incident occurred falls declined to comment.

Mr Atuti said if such an incident had occurred "it would be tackled in accordance with the law."

Last year, CID Director Muhoro Ndegwa barred CID officers from carrying firearms unless they are on official duty.

In a circular sent to all CID officers, the director warned that stern action will be taken to ensure officers do not misuse their firearms.

His decision, he said, was informed by regular complaints that officers-particularly those attached to the CID-were misusing their firearms.

Capital News has reliably established that even with Mr Ndegwa circular to his officers not to carry firearms, CID officers who are not on duty are still walking around with the firearms even when they are off duty.

He could not be reached for comment about the latest incident on Monday.

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