(AP) — A man awaiting extradition on a Massachusetts warrant alleging he killed his girlfriend and left her body in a car at a Boston airport escaped from police custody in Kenya, police said Thursday.
Kevin Adam Kinyanjui Kangethe slipped out of the police station and jumped into a privately owned minivan, Nairobi police chief Adamson Bungei said.
A fresh search for him began immediately.
Four police officers who were on duty at the station are in custody and have recorded statements, according to a police report seen by The Associated Press.
The officers said that around 4 p.m. on Wednesday, a man named John Maina Ndegwa introduced himself to the officers as Kangethe’s lawyer and said he wanted to speak with his client.
“The officers agreed to his request and removed the prisoner from the cells and took him to (an) office … leaving them there. After a short while the prisoner escaped by running away and left the (lawyer) behind,” the report said.
Officers pursued Kangethe but did not catch him, the police report said, adding that Ndegwa was arrested.
Nairobi police chief Adamson Bungei said he rushed to the station when he learned of the escape.
“We have arrested the officers who were on duty when he escaped to explain how it happened. It is just embarrassing to us,” he said.
Kangethe, 40, had been detained pending a ruling on whether he should be extradited to face a first-degree murder charge in connection with the death of Margaret Mbitu on October 31, 2023.
Massachusetts State Police said in early November that Kangethe had left her body in a car at Logan International Airport and boarded a flight to Kenya.
Massachusetts officials said they were working with Kenyan authorities to locate him, and he was arrested in a nightclub on January 30 after being on the run for three months.