Cops tagged in Calbayog mayor’s killing allowed to post bail
MANILA, Philippines — Due to weak prosecution evidence, a local court has allowed nine police officers charged with the death of Calbayog Mayor Ronaldo Aquino and three others to post bail for their temporary liberty.
In an order dated March 7, 2023, the Calbayog City Regional Trial Court Branch 31 Judge Maricar Lucero said the prosecution “failed to establish strong and convincing evidence of guilt for the crime of murder.”
Allowed to post P120,000 bail each for their temporary liberty were the following: Lt. Col. Harry Sucayre; Maj. Shyrile Tan; Capt. Dino Gonzales; Lt. Julio Armeza Jr.; Staff Sgts. Edsel Omega, Randy Merelos, and Neil Cebu; Cpl. Julius Garcia;q and Pat. Niño Salem.
The court explained that bail is not granted to prevent all the accused from committing additional crimes.
“The purpose of bail is to guarantee the appearance of the accused at the trial, or whenever so required by the trial court. The amount of bail should be high enough to assure the presence of the accused when so required, but it should not be higher than is reasonably calculated to fulfill this purpose,” the court said.
“Thus, bail acts as a reconciling mechanism both to accommodate the accused’s interest in his provisional liberty before or during the trial and the society’s interest in assuring the accused’s presence in the trial,” the court added.
Aside from Aquino, also killed were his security aide MSgt. Rodeo Sario, his driver Dennis Abayon, and bystander Clint John Paul Yauder.
They are also facing frustrated murder charges for the injuries sustained by Mansfield Labonite, another aide of Aquino.
Aquino was the second mayor of Calbayog City that was murdered after Reynaldo Uy in 2011.