Mother of slain ‘Dota’ player files murder raps vs Pangasinan cops
MANILA, Philippines — The mother of a computer gamer who was shot dead by police from Rosales, Pangasinan last August 2018 has filed murder raps against officers from the local police before the Office of the Ombudsman.
In her sworn statement, Christine Pascual on Thursday insisted that her son, 17-year-old Joshua Pascual Laxamana, was on his way home to Tarlac after a Defense of the Ancients (Dota) tournament in Baguio, and not to transport or sell illegal drugs.
According to her, police established Laxamana’s link to the drug trade using his tattoo — an image of a horned woman police said is often found in drug suspects’ bodies.
However, she noted that the tattoo is nothing but an image of the “Queen of Pain” or Akasha, a known DoTA 1 and 2 playable hero.
“Kilala kasing manlalaro ng Dota si Joshua, na ang codename ay ‘Ima.’ Sa sobrang pagkahumaling niya sa paglalaro, nagpatattoo pa nga ito ng imahe ni ‘Queen of Pain’ sa kanyang braso,” Pascual said.
“Upang mapagbintangan na sangkot sa droga si Joshua, binabanggit ng mga pulis ang tattoo ng imahe ni ‘Queen of Pain’ sa kanyang braso na tattoo daw ng mga sangkot sa droga,” she asserted.
Investigation by police from the Rosales Municipal Police Station said that Laxamana was aboard a motorcycle around 3:00 a.m. of August 17, 2018 when he disregarded a police checkpoint along the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx) access road.
They claimed that the Dota player fired at the officers, which broke the patrol car’s windshield, before fighting it out with authorities. Laxamana was killed after sustaining multiple gunshot wounds to the chest.
Pascual however has disputed these allegations, saying that her son does not even know how to ride a bicycle, much less a motorcycle. She also cited claims by her son’s companions, who said that Laxamana preferred to walk home.
“Hindi si Joshua ang lalaking sakay sa motor na diumano’y nilagpasan ang checkpoint ng pulis sa Barangay Bakit-Bakit. Hindi marunong mag-motor o mag-bike man lang si Joshua,” Pascual explained.
“Hindi rin si Joshua ang nakipagbarilan sa mga pulis dahil wala siyang pag-aaring baril o dalang baril noong Agosto 15, 2018. Lalo namang hindi siya lulong sa droga, dahil wala naman siyang dahilan para gumamit nito,” she added.
Aside from murder charges, Rosales police officer-in-charge C/Insp. John Corpuz and eight other local officers — including PO2 Arvin Abella and PO2 Roy Sarmiento who shot Laxamana — are also facing complaints for obstruction of justice and planting of evidence.
“Gawa-gawa ang lahat ng ebidensya laban kay Joshua. Tinanim lamang ng pulis ang baril at diumano shabu sa kanya; puro kasinungalingan ang salaysay ng mga pulis para pagtakpan ang pagpatay nila kay Joshua,” Pascual said.
However, police claimed that it was a legitimate operation, especially since the victim had outstanding complaints of robbery in Pangasinan.
Laxamana is one of the drug suspects killed in the administration’s war on illegal drugs. Official government data said that since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office in July 2016, more than 5,000 have died due to involvement with illegal drugs.
Numbers from administration critics though have placed the number to be around 11,000 to 30,000. /je
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