Cop attempts to arrest man after heated altercation in private village
MANILA, Philippines — A police officer attempted to arrest a Spanish national in the front yard of his own home in a private subdivision in Makati City, after a heated argument on the supposed quarantine violation of the latter’s house staff.
Javier Salvador Parra said his female house staff was watering plants in his front yard on Sunday when a barangay personnel saw her not wearing a face mask. He said a policeman, later identified as Senior Master Sergeant Roland Von Madrona, then came and wanted to fine him P1,000 for this supposed violation of his housemaid.
“I wasn’t aware that there is a law saying that inside your own property you must wear a face mask,” Parra said in an email to the media.
But according to a report from the Makati City police, the concerned policeman was inside the subdivision as requested by the chairwoman of Barangay Dasmariñas to regularly implement quarantine rules there. The report added that the housemaid was also “outside perimeter property” when the incident happened.
Parra said his house staff then went inside the house to relay the matter to him, after which he went outside his house and asked why the police had to fine him over the supposed violation.
“I told him frankly that a fine isn’t necessary as it occurred on private property. It escalated with the policeman charging at me and trespassing my private property without a valid search warrant and wanting to arrest me for no valid reason,” he said.
The incident was caught in a video taken by Parra’s wife. In that video, Madrona was seen tackling Parra to the ground to arrest him. Parra said this caused him physical injury and abrasions. He added he was also suffering from spinal injury and that being thrown on the ground caused him “immense” physical pain.
He was able to evade arrest after entering the front door of his house, while his wife continued arguing with the police officer.
“Does Makati police not have better things to do, like stop real criminals? If there was no camera running, would he perhaps have shot me, as the policeman did with the mentally challenged man a few days ago?” said Parra. He was referring to Corporal Winston Ragos, a retired military man who was suffering post-traumatic stress disorder and was shot dead by police in Quezon City for supposedly violating quarantine rules on April 21.
“My concern is mainly that this police officer and Makati police do this also to the poor, who are not as defensive as me. Filipinos are all in a dire situation with the lockdown, the last thing they need is Makati policemen going havoc on Makati citizens,” he added.
A separate video of the earlier scenario before the scuffle, however, showed the policeman being calm and polite while talking to Parra until the latter hurled him expletives.
The police report added that the officer politely spoke when he approached the housemaid.
“At this juncture, police officer politely introduce himself and advised the housemaid to wear her face mask for her safety,” read the police report.
In a text message to reporters, Makati City police chief Col. Rogelio Simon denied that Madrona was asking for a P1,000 fine. Simon dismissed this claim of Parra as a mere “accusation.”
He added that the maid was only asked to present an identification card for the issuance of violation citation tickets. She then went inside the house but Parra, who was shirtless and also did not wear a face mask, went outside and confronted the policeman and the barangay personnel.
When Parra went outside the house, he then questioned the authority of the officer and hurled expletives at him, according to the police report.
“At that time, said Bantay Bayan managed to document the situation using his mobile phone camera, thus Mr. Parra at that time [had] gone berserk and [was] uttering unsavory words towards [the] police officer and even humiliated the said officer,” the report added.
The incident has also reached higher authorities, even prompting Philippine National Police chief Gen. Archie Gamboa to order the National Capital Region Police Office to investigate the incident. Makati City Mayor Abby Binay also gave the same order to the city police.
Charges for disobedience to a person in authority, direct assault, and for violation of the Makati City Ordinance 2000-089 for not wearing a face mask outside residence are being prepared for filing against Parra. Maj. Gideon Ines, Makati City police investigation division chief, said Parra’s housemaid will also be issued an ordinance violation receipt.
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