Kenya has lost three athletes in a fortnight, two of them to domestic violence.

Edith Muthoni, an amateur runner is the latest athlete reported to have been murdered by her boyfriend even as Athletics Kenya raises concern over a spike in deaths of athletes in the East African nation – a powerhouse of middle- and long-distance races.

Even though Muthoni’s death was reported on Monday and subsequent arrest made on Tuesday, her identity as an athlete only came to light two days later, a day after former world 10km (women-only) record holder Agnes Tirop was reported dead.

Tirop was found dead with a stab wound on her neck and abdomen in her rural home in Iten, about 350 kilometres west of Nairobi

Her boyfriend Emmanuel Ibrahim Rotich, the key suspect in the gruesome murder, was arrested  on Thursday in Mombasa as he tried to flee to a neighbouring country.

Tirop was 25.

Meanwhile, Muthoni’s lover, Kennedy Chomba, has also been arrested in relation to her murder as authorities continuing with the investigations.

According to a senior police commissioner, Chomba attacked Muthoni, 27, Tuesday evening at Kianjege village in Kirinyaga Central  inflicting a deep wound at the back of her head.

Elsewhere, Hosea Mwok Macharinyang who represented Kenya in five world cross country championships was laid to rest on Thursday. He allegedly committed suicide.

Athletics Kenya has admitted that they are concerned with the high number of deaths with the federation admits that abuse of drugs is rampant among Kenyan athletes.

“It pains us because Tirop’s death is the latest in a series of misfortunes that have befallen athletes in recent past, including suicide, family wrangles, alcoholism and illegal drug use as well as untimely,” AK said in a statement, Thursday.

“The prime suspect in the gruesome murder of 25-year-old world 5,000m record holder Agnes Tirop, has been arrested.
Ibrahim Rotich, who was in a relationship with the athlete was arrested moments ago in Changamwe, Mombasa county, as he tried to flee to a neighbouring country to evade justice,” Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) said in a statement.

According to DCI, Rotich had rammed his getaway vehicle into a lorry as he desperately escaped the police dragnet.

The suspect is expected to be arraigned in court to answer to the murder charges.