PUERTO PRINCESA CITY ? A suspect in the killing of a retired naval officer, his wife, daughter and two relatives on Monday here was arrested by government authorities early Thursday.
Initial reports said suspect Florencio G. Magada Jr. was arrested in a village north of the city at past 2 a.m., said an official who refused to be identified as no official statement from the Task Force Paiton had been released yet.
The suspect was arrested for the killing of retired Lt. Cmdr. Ernesto Paiton, 59; his wife Chief Petty Officer Carmelita Paiton, 55; their daughter Erlita Paiton, 21, a nurse; their niece Sharon Cabatuan, 19; and nephew Renato Cabatuan, 17.
Their bodies were found in the Paiton residence inside the Officers? Village across the headquarters of the Naval Forces West in Barangay San Miguel in this city. They bore hack wounds.
The police source said several witnesses saw the long-haired suspect with a bloodied shirt in the vicinity of the Paiton residence on the afternoon of the massacre.
He said that, according to witnesses, the suspect boarded a tricycle.
The tricycle driver was later tracked down by authorities and confessed that the suspect asked to be brought to the terminal, going to the northern part of the city.
The suspect is now under the custody of the task force.
The source clarified that the suspect was not a military person, as earlier speculated.
The source also refused to identify the village where the suspect was arrested as there was still an ongoing operation for the arrest of two more suspects.
He said the case was already 80-percent solved.
City Mayor Edward Hagedorn offered an increase in the reward money from P200,000 to P500,000 for information leading to the arrest of the killers.
The massacre came as a shock to the city which has enjoyed relative peace over the years. Redempto D. Anda, Inquirer Southern Luzon