Police refute negligence in death of Alexander Monson inquest

A file photo of the late 28 year old Alexander Monson. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Mombasa, KENYA: Three Kenyan police officers including Director of Criminal Investigation Mwenda Ethaiba, police constable Kennedy Mutahi and retired police John Maina, on Tuesday testified in Alexander Monson inquest in a Mombasa court.

British aristocrat Alexander Monson the son of the 12th Baron Monson, died in 2012 at Diani police in Kwale County.

Kenya police claimed that Mr. Monson died due to drug intoxication, but postmortem established that he died from injuries caused by a blunt object.

According to Mwenda Ethaiba, who was one of the witnesses, there was no violence reported among the inmates booked at Diani police on the eve of the death of Monson.

Mr.Ethaiba further said some officers were charged in court for negligence.

This was after they failed to explain the whereabouts of the deceased mobile phones.

According to Ethaiba, the police officer did not record the property of the deceased despite being required by the law.

Court heard that the deceased was among the 19 inmates who were detained at Diani police station.

Police constable Kennedy Mutahi who was on duty, said that he handed over duties at about 8 am but realized Monson was unwell after 30 minutes.

“During the cleaning of police cells, I realized that one inmate was not breathing well and informed a colleague who reported to the OCS,” said Mutahi.

He denied the claims that Monson died due to  negligence of the police officers.

On the other hand, retired police constable John Miana said that he was informed that one inmate was drunk and when he entered the cell he found Monson lying on the floor, called him twice but did not respond.

“With the help of other prisoners we carried him out and laid him in the reporting office before I called the OCS,” said Maina.

He said he used the mobile phone of a person who had come to report an incident to call the OCS and informed him one inmate was unwell, but the OCS told him to do the necessary since he was not around.

Maina added that two European nationals approached him and requested to call an ambulance.

He later learnt of Monson’s death at 7PM.