Husband of Kenyan Olympic Runner Agnes Tirop Arrested for Murder
The husband of an Olympic runner found fatally stabbed in her Kenya home has been arrested for her murder.
On Wednesday, two-time World Championships bronze medalist runner Agnes Tirop was found dead in her home in Iten, a town in western Kenya. She had been stabbed to death, according to Olympic officials.
The following day, Kenya authorities announced they had arrested the distance runner's husband, Ibrahim Rotich.
"The prime suspect in the gruesome murder of 25-year-old world 5,000m record holder Agnes Tirop, has been arrested," the Directorate of Criminal Investigations-Kenya tweeted. "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 neighboring country to evade justice."
Investigators had launched a manhunt for him after family members reported receiving a troubling phone call from him crying and begging for God's forgiveness, according to the Associated Press. Authorities believe the couple may have had a fight before the athlete's death.
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Tirop was a rising star athlete in the sports community, gaining fame in 2015 when, at 19 years old, she became the second-youngest person to win the world-cross country title.
In a statement released Wednesday, Athletics Kenya said, "Kenya has lost a jewel who was one of the fastest-rising athletics giants on the international stage thanks to her eye-catching performances on the track."
This summer, she represented Kenya at the Tokyo Olympics in the 5,000-meter race finishing fourth. Last month in Germany, Tirop broke the world record in the women's-only 10-kilometer road race.
"It is unsettling, utterly unfortunate and very sad that we've lost a young and promising athlete," Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said in a statement. "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."