Oct 13 (Reuters) – Kenyan distance runner Agnes Tirop, a two-times World Championship bronze medallist, was found stabbed to death at her home, Athletics Kenya said on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old represented Kenya in the 5,000m event at the Tokyo Olympics and finished fourth in the finals after clocking 14:39.62.
“Tirop was found dead at their home in Iten after she was allegedly stabbed by her husband. We are still working to unearth more details surrounding her demise,” Athletics Kenya said in a statement.
Local police said Tirop’s husband was a suspect, according to multiple media reports.
“When (police) got in the house, they found Tirop on the bed and there was a pool of blood on the floor,” Tom Makori, head of police in Keiyo North sub-county, was quoted as saying by the BBC.
“They saw she had been stabbed in the neck, which led us to believe it was a knife wound, and we believe that’s what caused her death.
“Her husband is still at large and preliminary investigations tell us her husband is a suspect because he cannot be found. Police are trying to find her husband so he can explain what happened to Tirop.”
Last month, Tirop smashed the women-only 10km world record in Germany, crossing the line in 30:01 to shave 28 seconds from the previous record held by Morocco’s Asmae Leghzaoui from 2002.
Tirop won bronze medals at the 2017 and 2019 World Championships in the 10,000m, and also won the 2015 World Cross Country Championships.
“It is even more painful that Agnes, a Kenyan hero by all measures, painfully lost her young life through a criminal act perpetuated by selfish and cowardly people,” Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a statement.
“I urge our law enforcement agencies led by the National Police Service to track down and apprehend the criminals responsible for the killing of Agnes.”
Reporting by Hritika Sharma in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by George Obulutsa in Nairobi
Editing by Christian Radnedge and Toby Davis
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