Latest Stories

More guards, CCTV cameras to secure Palace of Justice

After yesterday’s shooting in the Cebu Palace of Justice, officials are seriously looking into adding closed-circuit TV cameras, metal detectors and more guards.

Court Administrator Midas Marquez said he was informed that the contract with Eagle Matrix Security services requires the use of metal detectors.

“When I get back to Manila, I’ll get a copy of that contract,” he told reporters in Cebu.

Starting today, security measures in the Palace of Justice and the Capitol compound will be beefed up.

Acting Gov. Agnes Magpale issued a memorandum to “institute strict security measures in the Legislative building of the Capitol.”

Magpale enjoined other government offices in the Capitol compound like the Dept. of Agrarian Reform to do the same.

In an interview, she said it was surprising that the violence took place when an election period gun ban was in effect.

The Cebu CIty Police Office will field four additional personnel.

There are 14 security guards at the Palace of Justice. Two are stationed at the main door while three guards are detailed at the exit door.

“With this incide, we feel vulnerable,” siad RTC Judge Ramon Daomilas.

The courthouse shooting that claimed three lives and injured one last Tuesday also revived calls for the creation of a Judicial Security Unit.

Judicial Security

Cebu RTC Judge Meinrado Paredes said it’s time to acquire modern security equipment like metal detectors and CCTV cameras because the building is visited daily by people facing cases involving shooting, theft and robbery.

Paredes also called for the revival of the Judicial Security Unit (JSU), composed of court employees, usually court sheriffs who were allowed by the SC then to carry guns at the vicinity of the courts.

He said this can augment the security guards, who were concentrated at the entrance and exit gates of the Palace of Justice.

Court of Appeals Justice Gabriel Ingles also called for the review of security because “there were lapses”.

Regional State Prosecutor Fernando Gubalane said prosecutors should be allowed to carry firearms, even this gun ban period.

Although it is not a guarantee for safety, he said, at least he can defend himself if someone will try to kill him.

City Chief Prosecutor Nicolas Sellon blamed negligent security for the courthouse shooting that claimed the life of lawyer Jubian Achas, Dr. Reynold Rene Rafols, a litigant, and the gunman, John H. Pope, a Canadian.

Also injured in the shooting was Asst. City Prosecutor Ma. Theresa Casiño.

“I would recommend to higher authorities to relieve the security personnel assigned in the entrance area,” Sellon said.


An autopsy is still being done to determine if Pope died of self-inflicted wounds or by gunshots fired by respondnig policemen.

But Yordan said he is recommending to the Police Regional Office 7 Director Chief Supt. Marcelo Garbo to create a task force headed by Senior Supt. Orlando Ualat, Deputy Regional Director for Operations (DRDO).

Tuesday’s courthouse shooting also had a chilling effect on courts in Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City.

Judge Carlos Fernando, the Executive Judge of the three branches of the Municipal Trial Courts in Cities (MTCC) in barangay Tipolo observed that there’s a need to improve security in the Mandaue City Hall of Justice. “The security here is unreliable,” he said.

For Mandaue City Hall of Justice security guard Elmer Cordova, although no major crime happened during his nine-year watch, admitted the need to beef up security in the facility.

“We have requested firearms, metal detectors and additional guards, but this hasn’t been approved yet,” Cordova said in Cebuano./Reports from Jucell Marie P. Cuyos, Jhunnex Napallacan, Norman V. Mendoza and Renan Alangilan.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: CCTV cameras , John Pope , Palace of Justice , Security , Security guards , Shooting

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  2. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  3. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  4. Massive infra spending set
  5. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  6. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  7. Passengers denied chance to escape sinking South Korea ferry
  8. South Korea president shouted down by distraught parents
  9. Two Popes who would be saints
  10. Lacson’s wife loses diamond earring to thieves but recovers jewelry quickly with police arrest
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • US teacher fired over comment on black president
  • Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  • Title of new Hillary Clinton book: ‘Hard Choices’
  • Filipinos, Dutch re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  • 14 killed in car bombing in Homs
  • Sports

  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Pacquiao shorts in Bradley fight sold for P1.7M in LA auction
  • Ryu pitches Dodgers past Giants
  • Alonso sets the pace in Chinese GP practice
  • Heat seek Three-peat but Spurs, Pacers top seeds
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
  • DoH denies Filipino nurse no longer positive for MERS virus
  • WHO warns vs spread of MERS-Cov, urges vigilance in taking precautions
  • Marketplace