Police: Arrest of Vhon Tanto proves not all suspects are killed
Amid a spate of killings of suspected criminals under the Duterte administration, police authorities assured that not all criminals are gunned down by the police if they peacefully surrender.
Senior Supt. Joel Coronel, director of the Manila Police District, issued the statement on Saturday after Quiapo road rage suspect Vhon Tanto was turned over to police authorities.
“’Di naman lahat ng suspek, napapatay. ‘Pag sumuko naman ng maayos, magiging maayos naman ang kahihinatnan (Not all suspects are killed. If they surrender peacefully, they will be treated fairly),” Coronel said in a televised press briefing.
He, however, said police would be allowed to use force if their lives were in danger.
Tanto was arrested in Masbate on Friday morning after a nationwide police manhunt was launched against him.
Coronel said the suspect attempted to flee but was cornered by the police and the military.
“To clarify things, the subject was arrested. He peacefully surrendered,” the police official said.
Tanto was presented to Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa at the Manila Police Distric headquarters.
Aside from Dela Rosa, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II, Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) chief Persida Acosta and the victim’s family were also present.
Dela Rosa said guns should be “last resort for defense.”
Tanto was the suspect who shot dead biker Mark Vincent Garalde after they engaged in a scuffle following a traffic altercation on P. Casal Street in Quiapo, Manila on Monday. An 18-year-old girl was in critical condition when she got hit by a stray bullet near the scene.
Dela Rosa said he would teach Tanto how to throw a punch properly.
“Hahamon hamon ka sa suntukan, ‘di mo pala kaya. Tuturuan kita sumuntok (You have the gall to engage someone in a fistfight, but you cannot punch. I am going to teach you how to punch),” Dela Rosa said.
Tanto underwent police booking and was brought to the Department of Justice (DOJ) for the inquest proceedings for charges of murder and frustrated murder.
Coronel said the case was considered solved but was not yet closed. IDL
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