Gamboa ‘satisfied’ but agrees crowd control wanting in Greenhills mall hostage crisis | Inquirer News
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Gamboa ‘satisfied’ but agrees crowd control wanting in Greenhills mall hostage crisis

/ 01:17 PM March 03, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Archie Gamboa has expressed content over the handling of the hostage crisis in a San Juan City mall on Monday but also admitted that measures to effectively control the crowd remains lacking.

It can be noted that as the hostage drama unfurled around 10 a.m. inside Virra Mall or VMall in Greenhills, many gathered shoppers and bystanders outside the building took out their mobile phones and live-streamed what has been happening on social media. The hostage crisis lasted for more than 10 hours.

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In a press conference in Camp Crame on Tuesday, Gamboa said: “Generally I’m satisfied because nobody died, which is the most important thing.”

“Of course, ‘yung initial na nabaril eh wala tayong control dun kasi ‘yun iyong initial na blast (the initial shooting we have no control of because that was the initial blast). But after the local government unit has activated its crisis management committee, then we will be responsible.”

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In an interview over dzMM on Monday night, Gamboa acknowledged that the police need to improve on “cordoning and we [need to] improve on how well we can control the extent of people who are covering it FB live.”

“Actually, maraming (there are many) comments like, crowd control, our people allowed [the taking of] FB live, these are protocols which the PNP should have the closer look,” Gamboa explained during Tuesday’s press conference.

“Kasi ‘di ba (Because) we were criticized in confiscating a cellphone of a person by a general so this time we want to be very careful and we will sit down and evaluate what happened there.”

“There was even a question, why allow him to go on a press conference, but ako I would already tell you that the reason behind there is tactical,” Gamboa added.

Suspect Alchie Paray was a former security guard who was reportedly laid off after several days of going AWOL (absent without leave). He seized the mall’s administration office located on the second floor after shooting his superior, Ronald Velita, as he entered the building Monday morning.

Velita was rushed to the nearby hospital for treatment.

Paray released the hostages, numbering between 60 and 70 individuals – and not about 30 persons as initially estimated, around 8:15 p.m. Monday following hours of negotiations with the police and local government unit.

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Paray was allowed to speak to the media to air his grievances shortly after all captives were escorted out of the building. But authorities pounced on him the minute they saw the chance – during the suspect’s unguarded moment.

Police subdued Paray and brought him to the San Juan Police Station.

READ: Greenhills hostage-taker arrested

According to Gamboa, Paray may face a string of cases such as kidnapping and serious physical injuries. Daphne Galvez

KGA

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TAGS: Archie Gamboa, Archie Paray, Crime, crowd control, Greenhills, Hostage, Local news, Nation, national news, News, Philippine news updates, PNP‎, San Juan City, V-Mall, Virra Mall
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