NBI: Tabloid columnist’s killer a professional hit man
BASING on the way Alex Balcoba was shot, the gunman must have been a professional hired killer.
This was the observation of Daniel Lalucis of the National Bureau of Investigation which is conducting a parallel probe into the killing of the newspaperman in Quiapo, Manila, last Friday.
“I say professional hit man because of the manner of the execution. He made sure [Balcoba] would not survive with just one shot,” Lalucis told the Inquirer.
The chief of the NBI death investigation division said that they have yet to determine why Balcoba, a columnist for the tabloid People’s Brigada News, was killed.
The victim was standing outside his watch repair shop around 7 p.m. on Friday when the gunman shot the left side of the back of his head.
His friends and family witnessed the killing which Lalucis described as “brazen.” Before that, the hit man got off his motorcycle, replaced his helmet with a baseball cap and casually walked toward Balcoba.
In his left hand, the killer held his motorcycle helmet, using it to cover the gun he was holding in his right hand. When he got close to Balcoba, he shot him in the head then walked away.
“There were plenty of people in the area considering it was a Friday night which also meant it was a Black Nazarene Day,” Lalucis said.
However, other witnesses have yet to tell investigators what they know of the incident, prompting the NBI to turn to the footage taken by closed-circuit television cameras in the area.
Based on the information given by the victim’s family, Lalucis said that hours before Balcoba was killed, he was crying while talking to someone on the phone. They also learned that some of the people he had written about in his column were not happy about it.
Lalucis said they have yet to receive information on whether Balcoba received death threats even while verifying if his death was work-related.
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