MANILA - Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido and three other policemen on Tuesday asked the Department of Justice (DOJ) to junk murder and arbitrary detention charges filed against them in connection with their June 1 raid in Ozamiz City, which resulted in nine deaths.
Espenido’s group said the nine fatalities were members of a robbery and gun-for-hire group. The suspects were killed in a hot pursuit operation in Barangay Cavinte and Barangay Balintawak, according to police.
Espenido earlier said the bodies were displayed in front of the Ozamiz City Hall to be identified by the suspects' victims.
When asked for a comment, Espenido said he is "pro-life [and] a professional law enforcer."
"Those who do no wrong have nothing to fear. Iyung voluntary surrender kung nakagawa ng masama, 'yan pinaka-best, pinakamapayapa sa trabaho sana," he said.
Espenido, Chief Inspector Glyndo Lagrimas Pujanes, SPO4 Renato Martir, Jr. and PO2 Sandra Louise Nadayag filed their respective counter-affidavits on the complaint filed by Carmelita Ugmad Manzano, wife of fatality Fancracio Semine Manzano and mother of fatality Jerry Ugmad Manzano.
Carmelita was among six persons arrested and allegedly illegally detained from June 1 to June 7 at the Ozamiz City Police Station.
The other fatalities in the June 1 operation in Barangay Cavine and Balintawak were Victorino Espina Mira, Jr., Lito Ugmad Manisan, Romeo Cogo Libaton, and Alvin Tulba Lapeña.
Associate Prosecution Attorney Loverhette Jeffrey Villordon gave complainant 15 days to file her reply. Failure to do so would mean the case shall be deemed submitted for resolution.