CEBU CITY (UPDATE) — Police are looking into alleged drug involvement and love triangle behind the slay of a woman in the city who had earlier accused officers of rape and extortion.
Police Lt. Col. Wilbert Parilla, deputy director for operations of the Cebu City Police Office, said Tuesday that Retchie Nepomuceno, 35, was allegedly part of a drug group based in downtown Cebu City.
"Could be that she didn’t remit the money,” he said in Cebuano.
Nepomuceno was shot dead by unidentified assailants on N. Bacalso Avenue Monday night. Before she was killed, she accused 11 policemen of Sawang Calero Police Station of extortion and rape.
One of the accused, Police Staff Sgt. Celso Lucero Colita, allegedly committed suicide at the Regional Police Drug Enforcement Unit office hours before Nepomuceno was gunned down.
In the interview, Parilla also alleged that Nepomuceno was in a love triangle with Colita, citing initial interviews.
Nepomuceno's live-in partner is in jail because of illegal drugs.
In a separate interview, Police Major Alejandro Batobalonos, chief of the Integrity Monitoring and Enhancement Group Visayas Field Unit (IMEG-VFU), said Nepomuceno refused to be part of their witness protection program.
She also had police escorts, but Batobalonos said Nepomuceno seemed to not trust the police.
"Hindi niya tinanggap 'yung witness protection program. In fact Sir, kahit kami, parang ano, kahit kami, parang wala siyang tiwala," he said.
(She did not receive the witness protection program. Even us, she didn't seem to trust us.)
Batobalonos said Nepomuceno rented a house in the city, and did not inform the police where she really lives.
He added that they have received a lot of complaint against the 11 policemen, but nobody filed cases against them.
Meanwhile, police maintained that Nepomuceno's death has nothing to do with Colita's alleged suicide.
In response to the incident, Gabriela party-list Rep. Arlene Brosas is calling for justice for Nepomuceno's killing.
"The rape and killing of Ritchie Nepomuceno adds up to the many cases of sexual violence perpetrated by the police amid the lockdown,” she said in a statement.
- reports from Annie Perez
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