Gun attacks put police on the spot in Olongapo


OLONGAPO CITY—Unsolved murders in this city, a major commercial center of Zambales, has alarmed the local government, prompting officials to seek the replacement of the local police chief.

“There is a growing perception that the peace and order situation in Olongapo is [breaking down]. We’ve already received the list of possible replacement for [Senior Supt. Rodolfo Recomono Jr.]. We’re just vetting them now,” said Mamerto Malabute, city administrator.

The latest crime that shocked the city was the murder of Paul Salvatus, 50, in Barangay Kalaklan on Monday.

Salvatus, son of a local businessman, was shot and killed by a lone gunman in the family-owned Skipper Beach.

Last week, two brothers were shot and wounded by unidentified gunmen as they were walking home.

Police said Jerwin Rey Kusumi, 31, a security guard, and Jeff Kusumi, 26, a student, were attacked on Fendler Extension, near Magsaysay Drive, the city’s main street.

Jerwin, who was shot in the head, underwent surgery and remains in serious condition at James Gordon Memorial Hospital here.

In May, lawyer Ian Vela Cruz, was shot and killed by a lone gunman in front of his house here. Vela Cruz represented a complainant in the kidnapping and extortion cases filed against local policemen by relatives of teen actor Jhake Vargas.

In April, Australian Paul Dean Davy, 52, was gunned down at a local beach resort that he managed.

No suspect has been arrested by the police in these cases, prompting residents to express their frustration through the social networking site Facebook. Sought for comment, Recomono said police are doing their work. Robert Gonzaga, Inquirer Central Luzon

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