Suspected NPA rebel escapes from CIDG custody in Davao Occidental town
DIGOS CITY, Philippines—One of the suspected New People’s Army rebels captured during Tuesday’s clash in Malita in Davao Occidental escaped from police custody on Wednesday evening.
Supt. Ed Leonardo, deputy director of the police’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in Southern Mindanao, told reporters here on Thursday that Ritchie Abrenica, 26, stabbed a personnel of the CIDG Davao del Sur with a shard of glass from a broken soda bottle before running away.
Abrenica and fellow suspected rebel Evelyn Magpatoc were being fed around 7:40 p.m. Wednesday at the CIDG Davao del Sur headquarters here.
After finishing his dinner, Leonardo said the rebel smashed the softdrink bottle he was holding and stabbed PO2 Bernard Meñoza at the back and ran away.
Chief Insp. Dave Mejia, CIDG provincial team leader, said Abrenica also stabbed himself with the same soda bottle.
He said the CIDG operatives, backed by Army personnel, could not directly fire at the fleeing rebel for fear of hitting civilians.
“We did fire warning shots, which he ignored,” Mejia said.
Police and military personnel conducted pursuit operation to recapture Abrenica but failed to find him, Supt. Querubin Manalang, the city police chief, said.
Manalang said the manhunt has continued, as of Thursday.
“I will lead the internal investigation on this matter to determine what really transpired the night Abrenica slipped out from the hands of his security escorts. At this point, we don’t know yet who committed lapses in handling the detainee,” Leonardo said.
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