ATHLETICS

Agnes Tirop's suspected killer to negotiate his fate away from court

Ibrahim Rotich pleaded not guilty for the charge of murder

DOHA, QATAR - SEPTEMBER 28: Agnes Jebet Tirop of Kenya celebrates winning bronze in the Women's 10,000 Metres final during day two of 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 at Khalifa International Stadium on September 28, 2019 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images for IAAF)

Ibraham Rotich, the main suspect in the murder of Kenyan distance runner Agnes Tirop has applied for a plea bargain as he seeks lesser charges after pleading not guilty to the offense.

Rotich denied killing his estranged girlfriend when he appeared before Justice Reuben Nyakundi on November 16, 2021 after being charged.

According to the charge sheet, Rotich is alleged to have killed Tirop on October 12, 2021, at the rural estate in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County and went into hiding after the incident.

He was finally arrested after two days in Mombasa after the lifeless body of Tirop was discovered in her house.

Mr Rotich, through his lawyer Allan Mbugua, has made the application to the High Court in Eldoret affirming that he wants to pursue a plea bargain path as part of the healing process with the family of the victim over the incident.

“My client wants to pursue the plea bargain path with the family of his estranged wife to lessen the pain they are going through since her killing occurred last year. We agree that life has been lost and it is such an unfortunate incident and that is we now prefer the route of the plea bargain,” Mbugua said.

Mbugua confirmed to the court that they plan to file an application in court for the plea bargain.

The prosecution did not oppose the application stating it was within the law and all parties including the family of the deceased woman be brought on board to reach a consensus because the two were legally married and murder emanated from domestic violence.

"We have a marriage certificate with us ascertaining that the two were legally married in 2016. the application by the accused to enter into a plea bargain has been filed with us, we are going to serve the lawyer of the family of the late Tirop," said the prosecution.

Richard Warigi, the lawyer for the slain athlete’s family said they would look into the application for the plea bargain once it is filed in court before making a decision on the way forward.

The Judge in his ruling has directed both parties to report to the court on September 22, 2022 on the progress of the plea bargain deal between the suspect and the family of the deceased.

Tirop gruesome murder came barely a month after she broke the world women-only record in the 10 km race in September 2021.

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