Cops searching for 'medic' in Benilde hazing

By Aie Balagtas See, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jul 04 2014 04:47 AM | Updated as of Jul 04 2014 12:47 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Police are looking for the "medic" who checked on the condition of Guillo Servando after he allegedly underwent hazing with other neophytes of Tau Gamma Phi fraternity in a house in Makati last Saturday.

Other neophytes allegedly informed their recruiters of Servando’s weakening condition.

A police source told The STAR the medic, a member of Tau Gamma Phi, attended to Servando.

The medic was reportedly tasked to ensure that Servando, John Paul Raval, Lorenze Augustin, and their 17-year-old friend would be “physically okay” after the initiation rites.

The source said one of the neophytes called the medic because “hindi na makagalaw si Servando (Servando could no longer move).”

“When he saw that Servando had a problem, he suddenly disappeared,” the source said in Filipino.

“He didn’t come back. We want to know why he suddenly left instead of taking the boy to the hospital.”

Servando was still alive when he and other neophytes were dropped at One Archer’s Place at 9:34 p.m., nearly five hours after the initiation rites.

The condominium’s CCTV footage showed Servando being dragged out of the elevator to Raval’s unit on the 29th floor.

He could no longer stand nor walk.

At 1 a.m. responding authorities declared Servando dead.

Home to Bacolod

In a text message yesterday, Servando’s uncle, Bro. Bong Servando, University of Saint La Salle in Bacolod vice chancellor for administration, said: “May good come out of this tragedy.”

Bong said yesterday his nephew’s remains will stay in Manila for a few weeks before being brought home to Bacolod.

“It will be interred in Burgos public cemetery where our parents were buried,” he said.

Another member of Tau Gamma Phi has sent surrender feelers to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

However, Joel Tovera, NBI Death Investigation Unit head, did not identify the fraternity member as he has yet to communicate with him again.

Hazing at UP

The University of the Philippines Diliman is investigating rumors of an alleged hazing involving one of its students.

Reportedly an athlete, the 17-year-old incoming sophomore was said to have been hospitalized for days from severe injuries suffered during the alleged hazing.

UP vice president for public affairs Prospero de Vera told The STAR they are checking the veracity of the rumors after Diliman chancellor Michael Tan talked to the family of the student.

“They are still investigating it,” he said. The family requested not to release details to the media, he added.

In a statement, Tan said the family wants justice, but that they also want to keep their privacy.

“We respect their decision and therefore cannot give details about the case even as we continue with our investigation,” he said.

Quezon City police director Chief Superintendent Richard Albano is calling on the alleged hazing victim to come out and report the crime.

“We’d like to know if this alleged incident indeed happened,” he said.

Albano said they have heard talks about the alleged hazing, but that no official report has been filed with the police.

“We’ve checked with all our 12 police stations and no report was filed,” he said.

Albano said police checked some hospitals in Quezon City, but that they have no records of any patient who could have been a hazing victim.

Police protection would be given to the victim if he comes forward and report the crime, he added.

Superintendent Richard Fiesta, Quezon City police Station 9 commander, which has jurisdiction over the Diliman campus, said the supposed hazing was not reported UP authorities.

He had been in contact with UP officials, he added.

The alleged hazing reportedly involved a prominent UP fraternity.

Based on UP rules, freshmen in the undergraduate courses are not allowed to join fraternities or sororities.

“The University impresses upon the members of fraternities, sororities and other student organizations that it condemns the continued existence of the culture of violence and finds the presence of erring students on campus reprehensible,” read the rules released in 2010.

A section specifically states that a penalty of expulsion will be imposed on any member or officer “who engages in any form of physical initiation or hazing resulting in or causing physical injury.”

It imposes the same penalty on the neophyte who will allow him or herself to be subjected to hazing, unless the student concerned agrees to become a witness for the university. – With Janvic Mateo, Reinir Padua, Danny Dangcalan