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Former prison officer handed the death penalty for killing girlfriend

Prison officer to hang after he shot his girlfriend infront of her child

File image of a hangman's noose

An ex-prison officer was sentenced to face the death penalty for the murder of his girlfriend at Zimmerman estate in Nairobi 14 years ago.

The Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal by Patrick Daniel Lesadala, who shot Diana Karambu Nthiba four times at her house on April 3, 2005.

Appellate judges Asike-Makhandia, Gatembu Kairu and Agnes Murgor upheld the conviction and death sentence imposed on Lesadala by High Court judge Fred Ochieng on June 19, 2013.

The judges said witnesses had told the court that Lesadala and Karambu had been having a difficult relationship.


12-year-old son witnessed the murder

Detectives told the court that the murder was witnessed by the victim’s then 12-year-old son.

Given the grisly, ghastly and callous nature and manner in which the appellant committed the offence, and right in the face of the deceased’s 12-year-old son, the death penalty was merited and we see no need to interfere with it,” said the judges.

Lesadala is said to have spent the night at Karambu's house but she had reportedly travelled to her uncle’s house in Dagoretti.


However, when Karambu returned in the morning, a quarrel broke out between the two and Lesadala killed her.

Later, Lesadala would confess to Sergeant John Onyango, who operated a bar at the prison, and whipped out the pistol and placed it on the table with five live rounds of ammunition and five spent cartridges.

MPs stand against femicide

The pistol and ammunition were surrendered to the Deputy Officer in charge of the prison and Lesadala taken into custody.

He was later taken to the scene of the shooting where they found the body of the deceased covered in blood.


The rise in femicide cases in Kenya has seen Women leaders, under their EMBRACE movement, launch a campaign against the vice.

EMBRACE has organised a vigil to commemorate the young Kenyan women who have been victims of Gender Based Violence.

The initiative dubbed “Her Life Matters” comes against the backdrop of recent killings witnessed among partners in relationships, that has drawn concerns across the country.


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