CEBU CITY, Philippines – An owner of the eatery beside a police camp here lost three fingers when a fragmentation grenade exploded in his left hand at 12:45 p.m. Friday.
The police identified the victim as Luther Labares, 45, said Senior Inspector Chuck Barandog, chief of Cebu City police station 2.
Labares was brought to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City for treatment, he said.
According to Barandog, Labares found a bag containing the M67 fragmentation grenade, a wig and a bullet holder in a pile of garbage on a vacant lot beside the Camp Sergio Osmeña, which serves as the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO-7) headquarters.
Labares pulled out the safety pin and tried to remove the cover of the grenade when it exploded, Barandog said.
He added that the explosion was heard in their police station which was around 300 meters away.
The customers of the eatery scampered away after hearing the explosion.
The M67 fragmentation grenade has a lethal radius of five meters and could result in casualties within up to 15 meters and disperse fragments as far away as 230 meters.
Senior Police Officer 4 Edmundo Capangpangan, a bomb expert from Special Weapon and Tactics (SWAT), explained that Labares was the only one injured because only the primer of grenade exploded. Capangpangan said that when Labares tried to remove the cover the pressure was released preventing the explosion of the entire grenade.
Chief Superintendent Marcelo Garbo, PRO-7 regional director, has ordered an investigation on the incident since there was possibility that the bag containing the grenade could have been thrown by a policeman from inside the camp to the garbage pile outside.
Garbo directed his intelligence officers to check the grenade to get it serial number as well other data to trace where it came from.