Director of Public Prosecution Noordin Haji acknowledged in a report submitted to the Senate Committee on Justice, Legal Affairs and Human Rights on Wednesday, September 8, confirming evidence tampering, intimidation of witnesses and victims, and interference with investigations as the top challenges that his office faces during prosecution of police brutality cases.
The DPP noted that there have been incidents where officers involved in crime destroy evidence, as they try to hide their involvement, which has hindered prosecution.
“For instance, in cases involving police shooting, the ballistic examination is normally impaired due to lack of bullet cartridges as evidence as they are often removed from the scene,” the DPP said.
He noted that police officers harass and intimidate victims and witnesses of crime, preventing them from reporting.
“Most victims are also profiled and labeled as criminals to the community so as to avoid a reaction from the public and defeat justice. In other cases, police often prefer trumped-up charges against victims in a bid to conceal their crime,” Haji noted.
He pointed out that the lawbreakers are often protected by their superiors and colleagues, as they act as an accessory to concealment of their crime or provide alibis for each other.
Haji while to a letter from the Justice, Legal Affairs and Human Rights committee dated August 27, 2021, added that they take seriously cases involving police brutality and will ensure cases are addressed and that the perpetrators are held accountable.
“So far, the ODPP has conducted inquiries on extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances at the Coast Region and in Kayole, Nairobi,” he mentioned.