PAO: Caloocan teen Remecio dead for a week when found
Michael Angelo Remecio, the 16-year-old Caloocan City resident whose killing remains a mystery, had been dead for a week when his body was found on Wednesday in San Jose del Monte, Bulacan province, according to an autopsy conducted by the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO).
But neither PAO nor the Bulacan police, which did its own autopsy, could say for sure how the teenager was killed, citing the body’s severe decomposition. The corpse was in a sack, the hands bound by nylon cord, when found by scavengers picking through trash along a stream.
On the day the body was recovered, Michael’s parents, Genevie and Dionisio Remecio, immediately recognized it to be that of their son based on the clothes — a black shirt and basketball shorts. They took Michael’s body on Friday back to their home in Bagong Silang, Caloocan, where he was last seen alive on Aug. 26.
Dr. Erwin Erfe, PAO forensic expert, told the Inquirer that Michael’s medical history enabled PAO to also confirm the body’s identity. This history included a surgery he underwent to remove his appendix and a fracture in the left elbow that he suffered in a basketball game.
Erfe noted bleeding and fractures on the back of Michael’s neck, indicating a blunt injury in that area. Michael’s lower back was in a more advanced state of decomposition compared to the rest of his body, suggesting he sustained severe injuries there, he added.
The forensic expert could make out stab wounds in photos taken of Michael’s body when it was found, but the marks were no longer that visible upon actual examination of the body, again due to decomposition.
Erfe noted that the autopsy conducted by PAO became more difficult because the funeral home, Faith Funeral Services in San Jose del Monte, which had kept Michael’s remains “covered the whole body in loose cement, in powder form,” something that Erfe had not seen done before.
“It obscured the evidence,” he said.
Supt. Fitz Macariola, SJDM police chief, said the investigation to pinpoint the teenager’s killers was being coordinated with the Caloocan police.
“We have leads, we have information that we are following,” he said in an interview on Saturday. “We are very close to identifying persons of interest.”
Remecio’s burial is scheduled at 9 a.m. today at Tala Cemetery in Caloocan.
A tarpaulin streamer at the wake conveyed the family’s cry for justice over the death of Michael Angelo, who just turned 16 on Aug. 7.
Family members and neighbors remembered him as a quiet kid who opted to quit the eighth grade at Bagong Silang High School, where they said he was always bullied.
After dropping out, the eldest of three siblings did odd jobs—from hauling goods at the public market to driving a tricycle—just to augment the family income.
“He wanted to be a policeman,” according to the mother, Genevie, who said she dreamt of Michael a few nights before his body was found.
In the dream, she said, the two of them were “reunited” in the middle of a banana field, “but as soon as I embraced him, he was gone.”