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State awards cop for brave hunt for robbers

Constable Joash Ombati was on Friday awarded a certificate for distinguished service. 

The award was presented to him by Interior CS Fred Matiang’i in recognition of his efforts during a security operation in Nairobi last month. A video of Ombati arresting robbers went viral on social media in October.

 “We are giving you this certificate because we are very proud of you. We are proud of what you did. You have shown an example of how work should be done,” Matiang’i said. The award was presented at the DO’s office in Westlands, Nairobi.

 Speaking to the Star on October 18, Ombati said he saw a man being thrown out of a moving Toyota shouting “wezi wezi”(thieves! thieves!). He was on patrol behind Villa Rosa Kempinski in Westlands and was standing by the roadside waiting to cross. “I saw a gentleman with a black bag being thrown out of a vehicle as it sped towards me,” he said. 

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 He cocked his gun and asked the driver to stop, but he did not. “There was a taxi where I was standing. The driver told me the men are thieves and we needed to chase them. I entered the taxi and we followed them,” Ombati said.

 As they trailed the two men, he shot at the white Toyota and its tyres were punctured. The vehicle went through Museum Road and followed the Parklands police station route.

 As Ombati trailed the Toyota, he kept firing in the air to alert the officers at the station. “I did not have time to get into the station to ask for backup. When the vehicle reached Mpaka Road, it hit a huge rock and stopped,” he said.

 “I shot at the window and the occupants of the vehicle surrendered,” Ombati said. He ordered the men to lie down on the ground as a crowd began gathering.

 “A boda boda rider opened the front door and took the stolen money, but I went after him and recovered it,” he said.

 Later, police from the station arrested the two suspects Sameer Kassim and Peter Musili. “We realised the money was Sh400,000,” Ombati said.

 The victim, Amos Charo, had travelled from Voi to buy materials in Nairobi and the two suspects took him to Westlands to show him where he could buy them cheaply, only to rob him.

 Kenyans took to social media, urging the government to acknowledge his courage and persistence.

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