Killer cop Benson Imbatu called his cousin for one minute and 30 seconds before he committed the heinous crime.
Police have been able to piece together his last minutes, finding out that the constable who was stationed at Kabete Police station Imbatu reportedly told the relative that he had killed a woman he only identified as Carol, with who he was said to have had a relationship, and that he would eventually kill himself.
The 1.03 am call did not, however, reveal why he had killed the woman, who he had been seeing for three months.
At the station where Imbatu worked for three years, fellow officers told of a man with a short temper and that they kept away whenever he was in a foul mood.
The 53-year-old father of three kept to himself. Most of the officers who spoke to The Standard said he was a “quiet man, whose mind you couldn’t easily read.”
The officers told of an incident in September when Imbatu and Carol got into an argument that saw him pull out her hair. Carol reported the incident at the station, but the matter was sorted out of court and the two reconciled.
Police believe that Imbatu’s range was triggered by the suspicion that Carol was cheating on him. They began dating in September when Imbatu met Carol, who worked at his favourite drinking joint.
He won her heart and she moved in with him at an apartment in Kangemi, where he had moved on November 12.
As their love blossomed, Imbatu opened a bar for Carol. Then mistrust set in with claims that Carol was seeing a DJ. And while she reassured Imbatu of her commitment to him, but the police constable still harbored reservation.
“He is the kind of man you couldn’t understand. At times a small joke would turn ugly even with his colleagues,” said an officer.
They also recalled an incident in 2018 when Imbatu is reported to have attacked and injured a man who was engaged in a dispute over rent with his landlord.
Imbatu confronted the rent defaulter and punched him so badly that he had to be rushed to the hospital.
The matter is said to have been reported to the Independent Policing Oversight Authority and is still under investigation.
Eye-witnesses claim that Imbatu stormed the bar he co-owned with Carol where he caused a commotion as he taunted customers with his gun.
He fired five bullets into the bar, destroying a TV set.
The owner of the building where Imbatu began his shooting spree said the policeman arrived home a few minutes past midnight in the company of Carol and another officer.
“He dropped her at the apartment and thereafter took his colleague home. Several minutes later, he returned and demanded that he parks his vehicle inside the compound.
The night guards told him that the parking slots were fully occupied. He got angry and told the guards to ‘create space for me inside, or else I shoot you dead.”
“It took a lot of convincing to make him park the car outside the compound,” said the landlord, who requested anonymity.
“After parking his car, he stormed into the apartment. He was visibly angry. Minutes later, the guards said they heard a gunshot from one of the houses. Upon rushing to the scene, they found a fire had started engulfing Imbatu’s house and the body of his girlfriend was on the floor.”
Imbatu had already left the house.
The gunshot had attracted boda boda riders to the scene. As Imbatu made his way out, the riders attempted to question him, triggering a violent response.
While escaping, he shot two neighbors, who also died at the scene. Another boda boda rider, who had attempted to give chase, was also shot and died at the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH).
Imbatu fired a total of 20 bullets.