Valenzuela cop's sanctions under review
The Philippine National Police (PNP) said the recommendation of its Internal Affairs Service (IAS) imposing a 40-day suspension on the police officer involved in the fatal shooting of a teenager with special needs in Valenzuela City last May is still under review, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.
In a statement, PNP chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, said all resolutions of the IAS regarding administrative cases of cops need to be reviewed by the Discipline, Law and Order Division (DLOD), an office under the Directorate for Personnel and Records Management (DPRM).
“But just like other results of IAS investigations, this case will still be subjected to two more reviews— under the Discipline, Law and Order Division of the DPRM and under the Office of the Chief PNP— to determine if there are solid legal grounds to justify the recommendations made. This is how due process works in your PNP,” he said.
This came as the family of victim Edwin Arnigo expressed its dissatisfaction after learning that suspect, Senior M/Sgt. Christopher Salcedo, will only face a 40-day suspension.
Arnigo’s mother even sought Eleazar's help regarding the matter, saying that stiffer penalties must be enforced against the cop.
Eleazar appealed to the family to let the entire review process takes its course as there is no final decision yet on the matter, noting that the 40-day suspension is only a recommendation.
Police had claimed that Arnigo attempted to grab the gun of the cop and was shot during an anti-illegal cockfighting operation in the city's Lingunan village last May 23.
The Arnigo family belied the police's claim, saying the victim was afraid of police officers.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) was tapped to conduct a probe into the incident.
Probe on Calbayog City mayor's killing
Meanwhile, Eleazar said he is awaiting documents from the DPRM in connection with the IAS' recommendation for the dismissal of five police officers accused of killing Calbayog City Mayor Ronaldo Aquino last March in Samar province.
This came after IAS inspector general Alfegar Triambulo said he has submitted a copy of their resolution on the administrative cases filed against Lt. Col. Harry Sucayre, Maj. Shyrille Tan, Lt. Julio Armeza Jr., Senior S/Sgt. Niel Cebu, and Cpl. Edsel Omega to the DPRM.
In a separate interview with the reporters, Triambulo said the witnesses' testimonies and the results of a Senate probe on the matter indicated that the policemen were bent on killing the mayor as they found out 267 bullet holes on Aquino's vehicle.
“Their claims that they were fired upon by the other group was the reason for their act of returning fire do not add up because there is a trajectory in the windshield, so there is an intention to kill whoever is inside the vehicle. Now, why are they also wearing bonnets? They cannot explain that. There were two of their companions inside their vehicle who were wearing bonnets,” Triambulo said in a mix of English and Filipino.
Earlier, the NBI filed murder and frustrated murder complaints before the Department of Justice against police officers involved in the March 8 incident that killed Aquino and five others.
The NBI based its conclusion on 53 statements of witnesses, a closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera footage of the incident, and information from the cellphones they had obtained.
In June this year, whistleblower Master Sgt. Jose Jay Scenario claimed in a Senate inquiry that a political rival of the slain mayor allegedly colluded with some PNP personnel to obtain a search warrant against him and tag him as the protector of a policeman involved in the illegal drug trade.
He added that the ambush on the mayor had long been planned.