Seventeen-year-old househelp in police custody over child abduction

A 17-year-old househelp is being held at Kabarnet police station over child abduction.

According to Caroline Kipnaigei, at 9am on March 20, she dropped her 20-month-old child to her sister’s house in Whitehouse Vineyard Estate in Nakuru town as usual, before leaving for work.

Ms Kipnaigei used to leave the toddler under the care of her sister’s househelp Marion Cherogony.

However, in the evening, she received reports that her sister’s child had not been picked at school by the househelp as usual.

“On Wednesday morning, I left my son at my sister’s place, as usual, before leaving for work. He is usually under the care of my sister’s househelp.

“In the evening, I got reports that she had not picked my sister’s child from school as usual and we wondered what had happened. I tried calling her but she did not answer my calls,” said Ms Kipnaigei.

She arrived home only to learn that the househelp and the child were missing, and when she inquired from neighbours, she was told that the two left the house in the morning.

“The house girl used to bond well with the child and she used to do her work very well. When I realised that they were not in the house, I thought that they were just within the estate. Their absence, however, raised eyebrows when darkness fell and they had not returned,” said the distraught mother.

At 10pm, she reported the matter to the Workers Police Patrol Base in Nakuru town under the occurrence book number (OB) number 12/20/ 03/2024 seen by the Nation.

When the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) officers tracked her phone number on Thursday, she was traced to Biretwo in Elgeyo Marakwet.

The details of the missing child and the househelp and the contacts of the parent were also shared on social media.

On Thursday afternoon, a boda boda rider in Kaptimbor, on the outskirts of Kabarnet town in Baringo Central saw the missing househelp and the child and she identified the pictures as those being circulated on social media and he called the number shared before alerting the police.

“I was on my way heading to Eldoret searching for them when I was called by someone in Kabarnet town claiming that they had been spotted in Kaptimbor shopping center and that is how I traced them to Kabarnet police station where they were being held,” said the mother of one.

Patrick Tuitoek, a boda boda rider from Kaptimbor said he saw the househelp and the toddler taking drinks at one of the shops and she resembled the details being circulated on social media of a missing child.

“When we interrogated her, she insisted that the child was hers, but she looked suspicious. On further interrogation, she tried to board a motorcycle and that is when we called the police and she was taken to Kabarnet police station,” said Mr Tuitoek.

Confirming the incident, Baringo County Police Commander Julius Kiragu said they received information from members of the public who had seen a girl who was with a toddler that seemed to have been reported missing in Nakuru town the previous day.

According to the police, the househelp went to Eldoret and later to Kabarnet town where she was arrested.

The missing child has been united with his mother and the househelp is being held at the Kabarnet police station.

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