PNP officials face murder raps for slay of crime watch leader
A case of murder has been filed against the riding-in-tandem perpetrators, who turned out to be junior police officials, behind the killing of a 51-year-old crime watch group leader in Gloria municipality, Oriental Mindoro over the weekend.
The Oriental Mindoro police filed the criminal complaint against Senior Insp. Magdaleno Pimentel Jr. and Insp. Markson Almeranez, both graduates of the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA), for the death of Citizens Crime Watch (CCW) regional chairperson, Zenaida Luz last Sunday.
Senior Supt. Chris Birung, provincial director of the Oriental Mindoro Police, said the suspects have been presented to the Pinamalayan Prosecutor’s Office to undergo inquest proceedings on Wednesday afternoon.
In civilian clothes, Pimentel and Almeranez shot and killed Luz in front of her house while riding in tandem on a motorcycle in Barangay (village) Maligaya past 11 p.m. on Sunday.
Responding to a distress call from a local village chief in Brgy. Banutan, a police mobile team chased Pimentel and Almeranez after seeing Luz lying on the pavement. During the pursuit, one of them opened fire on the police team. Both suspects were wounded.
A Manila Bulletin report said Almeranez even wore a mask and a wig as a disguise while Pimentel wore a bonnet and jacket.
Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor, Mimaropa police regional director, said the regional internal affairs service will conduct an investigation on the administrative liability of the two officials.
Mayor said Pimentel and Almeranez are still confined in the hospital while under custody of the Gloria police and the provincial public safety company.
Almeranez is the chief of Socorro police in the same province and was among the top 10 graduates of the PNPA “Tagapamagitan” class of 2013.
Last September, PNP chief Dir. Gen. Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa awaded Almeranez as outstanding police commissioned officer in a ceremony in Calapan City.
Pimentel, meanwhile, is a member of the PNPA “Kaisang-Bisig” class of 2009 and currently assigned at the First Maneuver Platoon of Oriental Mindoro Police Public Safety Company (PPSC).
Not tolerating rogue cops
PNP spokesperson Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos said the swift move of the Mindoro police to file criminal charges against its men manifests the stand of the PNP not to tolerate illegal acts from its personnel.
“The swift actions of the Mindoro Oriental (provincial police office) to respond to the distress call, arrest the suspects, and file criminal charges before the court clearly manifest the stand of the PNP not to tolerate any wrongdoings even from among our ranks,” he said.
“This is in line with the directive of Chief, PNP Dir. Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa to cleanse out ranks of misfits and rogue cops. The two suspects will have their day in court for the acts they committed,” Carlos added. CDG