Theft, vandalism of tombs shock town



FLORIDABLANCA, Pampanga—Eight boys have been accused of destroying 50 tombs and stealing items from the dead in the cemetery here. The tomb raiding and vandalism have never been encountered here or elsewhere and have outraged the community.

The boys, aged 13 to 16, have agreed to place themselves under the custody of social workers. Details of their support program would be discussed in a closed-door meeting among the boys, their parents, aggrieved families, village leaders and school principals, Mayor Eduardo Guerrero said on Thursday.

The municipal social welfare department has taken custody of the children. The Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 (Republic Act No. 9344) exempts children 15 years old or younger from criminal liability, according to Cherish Bernalte, the social welfare officer assigned to the case.

Village watchmen have secured them to protect them from retaliation by the aggrieved families.

No complaint has been filed against the boys. They were first detained and turned over by their parents to authorities on the night of Feb. 4 after a village watchman caught one of them ransacking a coffin that was interred earlier that day, a police report said.

The boys allegedly took the P130 that the dead’s family tucked in the coffin.

That night, an angry mob filled the police station. Some people in the group screamed expletives at the boys. Other people tried to hurt them, prompting the police to temporarily hold the boys in a cell to protect them, said Supt. Rodney Baloyo, chief of police here.

Two older boys were identified by the younger suspects as the group’s leaders, and were arrested on Feb. 5.

One of the boys said his older companions ordered them to crack open the niches with hammer. These older boys were the ones who took and wore the belongings of the dead, he said.

“They claimed they did it for the thrill or out of pressure,” Bernalte said, but the boys ended up exposing themselves to health hazards.

She said the boys had not admitted to destroying 50 tombs. Seven families have come forward to complain about the vandalism, she said.

The aggrieved families have demanded new coffins and payment for damages. One of them said the coffin of her husband, Rogelio, interred on Jan. 26, was found on the cemetery grounds on Feb. 4, its glass cover smashed and the handles stolen.

The boys regularly skipped classes and spent idle time at the cemetery nearby, the Inquirer learned.

“I don’t know what evil entered these boys’ minds,” Guerrero said. “But their families should be mainly responsible for them.”

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  • boybakal

    Theft, vandalism of tombs shock townThe boys, aged 13 to 16, The Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 (Republic Act No. 9344) exempts children 15 years old or younger from criminal liability.

    Yan batas ni Kiko Pangilinan.Libre ang batang kriminal.
    Pati mga bangkay di pinatawad. Dapat ilagay sa morgue si Kiko para matauhan.

    • spider69

      yes, correct at pilit pang ipinagtatanggol ang kanyang batas. sabi ni Kiko di gawin na rin na maka boto sa election ang minor dahil gustong baguhin ang kanyang batas.My God ito ba ang Senador na iboboto ko na napaka B??O,,,,,,,Hindi ma admit ni Kiko na palpak ang kanyang batas at hindi pinag-isipang mabuti.

    • samarutan

      i wish you read the whole law so you will know where to point your fingers. Little knowledge is dangerous, indeed!

  • kurakut


  • Karlo Cases Arellano

    Siraulo yang gumawa ng batas pati yung batas mismo…
    Kabataan na gumagawa ng krimen ngayon ! gawa lng ng gawa kasi hindi naman makukulong !

  • Ngiping Dilaw

    Aba!, ang mga buhay ay may akyat bahay. Ang mga patay ay may AKYAT NITSO O AKYAT BANGKAY. Ano na nangyayari sa Pilipinas.

  • bogli_anakdami

    hay naku, flips eh mga gung gongs!

    dito sa north cemetery, ang nitso eh ginawang condos ng mga squats… ang mga bungo eh ginawang pangransom…

    flips eh puro halang ang kaluluwa

  • wawa2172

    The Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006 (Republic Act No. 9344)
    exempts children 15 years old or younger from criminal liability.

    I guess our lawmakers did not go over the law before it was approved by The Pandak then. Pangilinan is from the opposition but pinag bigyan pa rin siya nang mga kasama niya sa senado to pass the bill that became a law. The young tomb raiders will do it again and again dahil may pera dito at abswelto kaagad sila dahil may batas na ma sasandalan nila. Parang sa bahay ko, tatlong beses na binalikan nang mga batang mangangalakal and once succesfull nilang naransak ang mga gamit sa loob  nang bahay namin. They only stop their habits of robbing my place  when I was able to get copies of the kids NSO birth certificates na lampas 15 years old na ang iba. Pinalaya na sila nang mga police after tanungin ang mga idad nila, all said they are below 15. It took me two weeks to get the NSO certificates at binale wala na ito nang mga police dahil laya na daw ang mga bata.

  • divictes

    Senator Kiko, NOTED mo ba ‘to?

  • Edward Solilap

    Parents are responsible and should take all the consequences their children crimes in the community.

  • robrano

    Not the parents at first. These boys just rice on the stupid law which protects them from jail due to age. What it needs at times like now is an age of 12 for no jail but a harsh corection camp from 10 to 12 jears old to make them be aware of their risk At this age, kids know more about crimes than a generation ago at 18, also due to internet and the action (killer, raper)movies on TV. Six years old kids steal, throw stones, torture pet animals and tell you frankly “you can not punish me, I am a child”. That is not law, that is idiotry which invites youngsters to try out if crime pays.

  • $5699914

    stupidity shows….pinag-aral pero lakwatsa ang hanap!
    kain-tulog-tambay, iyan ang pinangarap na propesyon sa buhay…walang kwentang mga tao!

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