4 accused in mayor’s killing arraigned, plead not guilty
The four suspects in last month’s killing of Maconacon town Mayor Erlinda Domingo of Isabela and the wounding of her bodyguard pleaded not guilty during their arraignment Monday.
During the proceedings at the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 220 before Judge Jose Paneda, murder and attempted murder charges were read against Marsibal Abduhadi, the alleged gunman; his wife Mary Grace; and coaccused Christian Pajenado and Michael Domingo.
Mary Grace and Pajenado also pleaded not guilty in connection with the separate cases of gun ban violation and illegal possession of firearms filed against them.
Mary Grace was charged after she was allegedly caught with cal. .45 and .25 pistols and ammunition, including a box containing 50 bullets for a 9 mm pistol.
Pajenado, on the other hand, was charged after a cal. .45 pistol was found in his possession following his arrest in Barangay Commonwealth.
The judge, meanwhile, ordered that all six cases be consolidated since they were all connected to the killing of Domingo and the wounding of her driver-bodyguard Bernard Plasos.
The mayor was gunned down on Jan. 22 as she was alighting from her sport utility vehicle outside the Park Villa Apartelle at the corner of Examiner Road and Quezon Avenue in Quezon City. Plasos was shot and wounded in the thigh as he was running back to the inn to ask for help.
Mary Grace, Pajenado and Domingo were arrested by members of the Quezon City Police District’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Unit shortly after the killing while Abduhadi was arrested three days after the incident at the Salaam Mosque Compound in Barangay Culiat.