Kenya police seek more arrests after former British Army officer is hacked to death by burglars

Former commander of a local army base was killed with machete before gang of five made off with valuables

Kenyan police said on Monday they were closing in on an armed gang that murdered a former British Army officer during a machete attack after they broke into his home.

David Parkinson, 58, the general manager of a 49,000-acre ranch in central Kenya, was slashed several times at his home near Nanyuki in central Kenya and died of his wounds, according to reports.

Marius Tum, Laikipia east police commander, said detectives investigating the murder were pursuing important leads that could lead to the arrest of more suspects. He told the Daily Nation that one suspect had been arrested in a nearby village on Sunday morning and was still in police custody.

The family spent yesterday waiting for the arrival of the couple's daughters to witness the post-mortem examination, it was reported.

The group smashed their way through a glass door while Mr Parkinson and his wife Sonja, 52, were sleeping early on Sunday. While some of them attacked Mr Parkinson, others tied his wife’s hands.

Mrs Parkinson was able to escape to a secure room and locked herself inside, emerging only when she was sure the attackers had gone. The local police chief, Marius Tum, told reporters: “The wife – who had been tied up – managed to escape into a strong room, only to return to find that her husband had been fatally wounded in some kind of scuffle.”

Police said one man had been arrested over the attack and they were pursuing leads that could lead to the arrests of other suspects, according to Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper. The gang stole a laptop, a mobile phone, a small amount of money, ornaments and a bottle of champagne.

The couple’s two daughters live in Britain and are expected to travel to Kenya.For the past eight months, Mr Parkinson worked as general manager of the Lolldaiga Hills cattle ranch, near the Mount Kenya national park. He had lived in Kenya for the past decade after serving with the Parachute Regiment for 30 years from 1973. He rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel and was awarded an OBE in 1998, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Mr Parkinson worked as a conservationist and spent five years as the deputy director of a nearby game reserve, where Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton in 2010. The prince, who met Mr Parkinson, was said to be saddened by the news of his death, according to a spokesman.

Locals visiting to pay their respects said Mr Parkinson had helped to improve the roads in the area and gave casual jobs to locals. “He was a very good man,” said Esther Muthoni.

Harry Bucknall, who served in the Army with Lt-Col Parkinson, said he was devastated by the death of his friend. “Good people who loved Kenya and did so much for the locals. They didn’t deserve this,” Mr Bucknall said. “He was the best; a loyal and devoted friend. We had so many great times together.”

In London, the Foreign Office confirmed the death of Lt-Col Parkinson. “We are aware of his death and we stand ready to provide consular assistance to his family at this sad time,” a spokesman said.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / Web Developer

£30 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Software / Web Developer (PHP / MYSQL) i...

Guru Careers: Account Executive

£18 - 20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Executive is needed to join one...

Guru Careers: Software Developer / Software Engineer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Software Developer / Software Engineer i...

Reach Volunteering: Volunteer Trustee with Healthcare expertise

Voluntary and unpaid, reasonable expenses are reimbursable: Reach Volunteering...

Day In a Page

Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada
Birthplace of Arab Spring in turmoil as angry Tunisians stage massive sit-in over lack of development

They shall not be moved: jobless protesters bring Tunisia to a halt

A former North African boom town is wasting away while its unemployed citizens stick steadfastly to their sit-in
David Hasselhoff's new show 'Hoff the Record': What's it like working with a superstar?

Hanging with the Hoff

Working with David Hasselhoff on his new TV series was an education for Ella Smith
Can Dubai's Design District 'hipster village' attract the right type of goatee-wearing individualist?

Hipsters of Arabia

Can Dubai’s ‘creative village’ attract the right type of goatee-wearing individualist?
The cult of Roger Federer: What is it that inspires such obsessive devotion?

The cult of Roger Federer

What is it that inspires such obsessive devotion?
Kuala Lumpur's street food: Not a 'scene', more a way of life

Malaysian munchies

With new flights, the amazing street food of Kuala Lumpur just got more accessible
10 best festival beauty

Mud guards: 10 best festival beauty

Whether you're off to the Isle of Wight, Glastonbury or a local music event, we've found the products to help you
Unai Emery’s passion for winning and eye for a bargain keep Seville centre stage in Europe

A Different League

Unai Emery’s passion for winning and eye for a bargain keep Seville centre stage in Europe, says Pete Jenson
Amir Khan and James DeGale’s remarkable Olympic performances were just the start of an extraordinary journey - Steve Bunce

Steve Bunce on Boxing

Amir Khan and James DeGale’s remarkable Olympic performances were just the start of an extraordinary journey
Abuse - and the hell that came afterwards

Abuse - and the hell that follows

James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to publish his memoir
Why we need a 'tranquility map' of England, according to campaigners

It's oh so quiet!

The case for a 'tranquility map' of England
'Timeless fashion': It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it

'Timeless fashion'

It may be a paradox, but the industry loves it
If the West needs a bridge to the 'moderates' inside Isis, maybe we could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive after all

Could have done with Osama bin Laden staying alive?

Robert Fisk on the Fountainheads of World Evil in 2011 - and 2015
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear

Evolution of swimwear

From bathing dresses in the twenties to modern bikinis
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf