Crame ‘suicide’ takes curious turn after gunpowder tests
No trace of gun powder was found on the hands of the suspected child rapist and killer who allegedly shot himself while in custody at the Philippine National Police headquarters in Camp Crame on Tuesday.
Likewise, his two police escorts from the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG)—SPO1 Grant Chaluyen and PO3 Felix Parafina—tested negative for gunpowder nitrates.
A report from the PNP Crime Laboratory (CL), which the Inquirer saw on Friday, showed that casts taken from both hands of Hilario Herrera’s body “gave negative result to the test for gunpowder nitrates.”
It concluded that “both hands of the above-named cadaver (Herrera’s) do not contain gunpowder nitrates.”
After undergoing inquest, Herrera allegedly grabbed Parafina’s 9-mm pistol and shot himself in the head as he was being led back to his detention cell inside the AKG compound in Camp Crame, according to the AKG director, Senior Supt. Glen Dumlao.
The 50-year-old carpenter from Nueva Ecija was earlier charged with the abduction, rape and murder of an 8-year-old girl, who disappeared on July 19 and whose body was later found in an irrigation site in Jaen town.
Another report from the PNP crime lab noted that “qualitative examination conducted on the paraffin casts taken from both hands of SPO1 Grant Chaluyen and PO3 Felix Parafina gave negative result to the test for gunpowder nitrates.”
But PNP-CL director Chief Supt. Aurelio Trampe Jr. clarified that paraffin tests were not conclusive and merely serve as supporting evidence.
He explained that several factors usually affect the outcome of the tests, like the type of firearm used as well as the direction of the wind during firing.
“What would serve as conclusive evidence in any crime incident are the results of a ballistics test and an autopsy,” Trampe said.
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