Bodyguard of mayoral bet stabbed dead in Antique town
ILOILO CITY — A bodyguard of a mayoral candidate was stabbed dead in Bugasong town in Antique, Saturday evening.
But a police official said the killing of Emmanuel Tauro, a close aide of Vice Mayor John Lloyd Pacete, did not seem to be election-related.
“It appears that the incident (stabbing) was due to a long-running personal grudge between the victim and assailant,” Senior Insp. Juvy Cordero, Bugasong police chief told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
Pacete has called for a deeper investigation into the attack, suspecting that one of the candidates could be the target of attack.
The vice mayor, who is running for mayor under the ruling Liberal Party against Joemarie Pesayco of the National Unity Party, was about two meters from Tauro but was unharmed.
Physicians pronounced Tauro dead on arrival at the Bugasong Medicare Community Hospital where he was brought after he was repeatedly stabbed at 6:24 p.m. in Barangay Tagudtud North in Bugasong, about 43 kilometers north of the capital town of San Jose, Antique.
Police were still conducting pursuit operations against suspect Pedro Mariano who fled after the attack.
Pacete, other LP municipal candidates and Tauro along with their supporters were at the house of barangay (village) chairman Alex Valdevieso to coordinate preparations for a political rally at the village.
While Pacete and Valdevieso were conversing in front of the Valdevieso’s house, a confrontation between Tauro and Mariano erupted, Cordero said.
She said Mariano repeatedly stabbed Tauro who managed to shoot him with a handgun but missed.
Pacete said the possibility that one of the candidates could have been the target of the attack should not be discounted.
“Based on our investigation, there is a long-running feud between Mariano and Tauro. A day earlier, Tauro reportedly poked a gun at Mariano,” Cordero said.
She said Mariano, a fish vendor, has been out on bail for a separate homicide case.
Investigators recovered a deformed slug at the place of the attack while the gun believed to be of Tauro had not been recovered.
Cordero said the gun was with Pacete but the vice mayor denied having the firearm.
He said he did not authorize Tauro to carry a firearm but was not sure whether the victim had a gun during the attack. SFM
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