A 55-year-old man’s seemingly harmless habit of posing as a police chief inspector got him into serious trouble after he caught the attention of real policemen whose suspicion were aroused by his inappropriate uniform.
“We even saluted him,” Senior Police Officer 1 Domingo Pedroso of the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) Novaliches station told the Philippine Daily Inquirer, adding that he and his colleagues initially thought that Onofre Pavelona, a resident of Barangay (village) San Bartolome in Novaliches, Quezon City, was a real police officer.
Pedroso said that Pavelona had introduced himself as Chief Inspector Joey Pabelona when he was accosted. The “chief inspector” was clad in a black shirt with “CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group)” markings and a pair of camouflage shorts. He also wore a police ball cap and had a 9 mm pistol tucked into a holster attached to the waistband of his shorts.
Pedroso told the Inquirer that he and other members of the Novaliches police station were on patrol in a police car at 11 p.m. on Friday on Dela Cruz Street in Barangay San Bartolome when they spotted Pavelona standing in front of a 24-hour convenience store.
The policemen had approached Pavelona after observing that he was not wearing the proper uniform. Pavelona then introduced himself as Chief Inspector Pabelona, prompting the other policemen to salute him.
However, Senior Police Officer 1 Rodel Deogracias noticed the ball cap on the elderly man’s head, a headgear worn only by police non-commissioned officers.
When he asked for Pavelona’s identification cards, the latter presented two CIDG IDs
which turned out to be fakes. He also failed to present the necessary documents for his firearm, resulting in his arrest.
He was brought to the station for impersonating a policeman and for illegal possession of a handgun and ammunition.
Pedroso told the Inquirer that the elderly man had apparently frequently posed as a policeman.
“He has no previous record of having used [this habit of his] in committing any crime,” said Pedroso who added that Pavelona may simply be a frustrated law enforcer.
Pavelona remains detained at the Novaliches police station holding cell. He has been charged in the city prosecutor’s office with usurpation of authority and illegal possession of firearms.