Shock as three officers killed in grenade attacks. # Times LIVE Kenya asks for FBI help after 3 police killed
Eight days after three policemen were killed in Nairobi, one by a grenade, there are indications linking a second grenade explosion on Thika Road to the al-Shabaab terror group and a local criminal gang.
Police say investigations also indicate that the second grenade was intended to blow up a city police station.
The first grenade exploded in a Landrover carrying Administration policemen in Eastleigh and the second at the Roysambu roundabout on Thika Road.
Detectives have yet to link the two incidents, but they suspect they were planned by the same group. A mobile phone found at the scene of the second explosion is expected to provide vital clues.
The investigation is being carried out by the anti-terrorism police unit. The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has already completed a preliminary probe.
“The FBI were called in only to provide technical support. Local detectives are making good progress, and we shall know the results soon,” the police commissioner’s principal deputy Francis Okonya said.
Had been planted
Part of the preliminary report indicates the grenade that exploded in Eastleigh and killed corporal Erastus Kamau had been planted in the vehicle and not thrown from outside, as had first been assumed.
The conclusion was made after the grenade safety pin was recovered inside the vehicle.
Mr Kamau’s colleague, who survived, has since been interviewed by detectives after he was admitted to hospital.
After studying fragments of the grenade used, detectives found it is similar to those used by local security agencies.
Executors of the second incident, who were riding on a motorcycle, were cornered and shot dead by police shortly after they killed two other officers.
Their identities have since been established after their fingerprints were matched at the national database at the office of the Registrar of Persons.
Police say the two men had links to al-Shabaab and a local criminal group. Their associates are being pursued for interrogation.
The slain officers had been directing traffic when they stopped the motorcycle for a traffic offence.
One of the officers snatched the key when the men tried to speed off, which prompted one of them to draw a pistol and shoot the officers.
He then threw a grenade to scare off passers-by who attempted to prevent them from escaping.
Indications that the first grenade was already in the Landrover corroborates an account by eyewitness Francis Mugo who said he saw smoke billowing from the vehicle and Cpl Kamau attempting to jump out before the explosion.
Bomb Disposal Unit detectives were among the first to arrive at the scene and collected evidence, including the grenade’s pin. The force of the explosion also reveals that the grenade was under the seat because it blew up the victim’s lower body, the windscreen on his side and the vehicle’s roof,” a senior police officer who has seen the initial report told the Sunday Nation.
But it is still not clear how the grenade got in the vehicle. Nation