ILOILO CITY—The Iloilo Regional Trial Court (RTC) has convicted three persons of robbing and killing a local television news anchor in 2004 and sentenced them to prison terms.
In a 27-page decision issued on Dec. 28, 2012, Judge Adriano Savillo, presiding judge of the RTC Branch 30, found Rosenie Gonzales, Michael Sombise and Rico Agillo Jr. guilty of robbing and killing Christopher Misajon, news anchor of a GMA 7 affiliate here.
Gonzales and Agillo were sentenced to up to 30 years in prison while Sombise was sentenced to a prison term of 12 years because he was just 16 years old when the crime was committed.
The three were also ordered to pay more than P400,000 in damages, hospital and funeral expenses and for the items they took from Misajon and his companion, Ma. Theresa Bacabac.
Misajon, a news reader of GMA 7, died from a bullet wound on Sept. 25, 2004, two days after he was shot in Barangay San Rafael in Mandurriao District in this city.
Bacabac said in her testimony that she and Misajon were in Misajon’s car and on their way to Jaro District from Arevalo District but got lost when they decided to take a shortcut. She said they were waylaid by several men while they were about to turn back.
Bacabac, who was left unharmed, fled and sought help.
Sombise and Gonzales, who admitted to the crime, said they had planned to rob a businessman engaged in buying and selling cattle and who regularly passed by the area. But they decided to rob the two victims after they saw Misajon’s vehicle entering the area.
They claimed that the shotgun had fired accidentally and hit Misajon while they were robbing the victims.
The robbers also took Misajon’s two cell phones and his wallet, Bacabac’s cell phone and cash, and other personal items.