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13 Oct, 2021 14:19

Tokyo Olympics star and world record holder Agnes Jebet Tirop, 25, found stabbed to death in home in Kenya

Tokyo Olympics star and world record holder Agnes Jebet Tirop, 25, found stabbed to death in home in Kenya

Kenyan Olympic star Agnes Jebet Tirop, who placed fourth in the 5,000m at the recent Games in Tokyo, has been found dead at her home with stab wounds to her abdomen.

Tirop's death was confirmed by Barnaba Korir, the chair of Athletics Kenya, and comes just weeks after her record-breaking run at the Road To Records event in Germany, where she smashed the women's record for the 10 kilometers, set by Moroccan Asmae Leghzaoui in 2002, by a staggering 28 seconds.

Her death is understood to have occurred in the town of Iten, a high-altitude training area in Western Kenya – with local police launching an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the incident.

"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," said Athletics Kenya.

"Tirop was found dead at their home in Iten. We are still working to unearth more details surrounding her demise."

"I urge our law enforcement agencies led by the [National Police Service Kenya] to track down and apprehend the criminals responsible for the killing of Agnes so that they can face the full force of the law," added Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta.

A report by RunnersWorld, as well as the press release from Athletics Kenya, state that Tirop's husband was allegedly involved in her death.

Tirop was one of the fastest-rising female athletes in Kenya and her death has sent shockwaves through the sport. 

In addition to her fourth-placed finish at the Tokyo Olympics, Tirop also secured bronze medals at the 10,000m World Championships in 2017 and 2019.

Another of her career highlights was the gold she won at the World Cross Country Championship six years ago – a victory which ensured she was the second-youngest medallist in history at that level.

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"Heartbreaking," sports journalist Usher Komugisha wrote in capital letters on Twitter.

"Kenyan athlete Agnes Jebet Tirop, who represented Kenya at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in the 5000m, has been found dead in her house with stab wounds to her abdomen. She was just 10 days away from her 26th birthday. Rest in peace, Queen."

"What a sad afternoon for the whole country," added another mourner. "Our legend, Agnes Jebet Tirop, has been found dead [a] few days [before] her 26th birthday, October 23rd.

"She was young, energetic and patriotic but someone just chose to take away her life. May her soul Rest in Peace."

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