Nairobi — Kenyan police officers freed three suspects, identified by a teenager who was gang-raped by six men and thrown into a pit latrine, after making them cut the grass in the police camp, the Daily Nation newspaper reported on Tuesday.
Sexual violence is widespread in Kenya and critics say the police do not take it seriously enough.
The 16-year-old girl was beaten up and gang-raped by six men on the way home from her grandfather’s funeral in western Kenya. After she lost consciousness, they dumped her inside a six metre-deep pit latrine where neighbours found her the following morning.
Her spinal cord was broken and she has a double fistula – holes between her vagina and rectum – which means that she leaks urine and faeces.
The paper reported that the villagers took the girl to the Tingolo Administration Police Camp to record a statement. They also frog-marched the three suspects she had identified by name to the police camp where they were arrested, it said.
“The three, for some strange reason, were only ordered to cut grass around the police camp and set free shortly after,” the girl’s mother told the paper. “In the meantime, the police told me to take the girl home so that she could take a shower before taking her to hospital.”
It is important for rape victims not to shower or change their clothes because they may contain the perpetrator’s DNA.
The suspects now taunt the family, according to the girl’s mother.
“They often call purporting to find out how she is faring. They promise to give us something small for medical expenses and then go under until the next call,” she told the paper.
The girl’s family cannot afford to pay for surgery to repair her spine and the fistula, the paper said. – Thomson Reuters Foundation