In 2020, Julius Irungu was a hardworking hawker who sold second-hand beddings. He had just returned to Murang’a town from Gikomba market, the largest second-hand market in the country, to restock when tragedy struck.
As he waited for a boda boda to take him and his luggage home, he was accosted by a gang of four men, who appeared to him as police officers. They took hold of him and led him down a narrow path, where they eventually found a Toyota Fielder parked near a stream. They demanded money and threatened to kill him if he did not give it to them.
After giving them the money, they opened the boot of the car and he was shocked to see a woman lying in it, bloody and naked from the waist down. Irungu was forced to get into the boot beside the woman and the car took off.
The car stopped at a dark spot that had trees and the assailants. They tied him to a tree, assaulted him sexually and left him unconscious. He was later found by a group of elderly men and woke up four days later at Muriranjas Hospital.
He was referred to Murang’a General Hospital before well-wishers facilitated him to undergo treatment at Nairobi Women’s Hospital, where he underwent corrective surgery. The incident left him severely disturbed, but with the help of intensive therapy, he was able to heal psychologically and has since become a father of two.
The police were unable to find the culprits and the incident left his village in shock. Irungu plans to start a support group for victims of sexual violence.