MANILA - The killing of an unarmed mother and her son at the hands of a policeman in Tarlac is an "isolated" case, the Philippine National Police said Monday as it condemned the incident.
Sonya Gregorio and her son Frank Anthony were shot dead Sunday by their neighbor Police Senior Master Sgt. Jonel Nuezca after an altercation in Paniqui town.
The PNP assures the victims' family that it "does not and will never condone any criminal act of our police officers," said its chief Gen. Debold Sinas.
"The PNP considers this as an isolated involvement of the person of PSSg (Nuezca). In no way will such incident affect the sworn duty of the 221,000 police personnel to serve and protect our people," he said in a statement.
"Again, let me express my sincere condolences to the family of the victims, and I am extending to them any form of assistance within my power as chief PNP to appease their emotions in this unexpected time of grief."
Criminal charges have been filed against Nuezca and the PNP Internal Affairs Service will also investigate, Sinas said.
Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, who oversees the PNP, condemned the killings as "blood murder" and said he would ensure Nuezca would face charges and would be removed from service.
"Kitang-kita naman natin ito, ito ay isang blood murder. Kitang-kita sa video, hindi lumalaban 'yong biktima. Hindi naman armado ang mag-ina. Talagang murder ito," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo..
(As we can see, this is blood murder. As shown in the video, the victims didn't resist. The mother and son were unarmed. This is murder.)
"We don't need this kind of policeman. Napakasimpleng bagay lang 'yan para gamitan mo ng armas. Walang justification para barilin mo in cold blood. Talagang point-blank pa 'yong distansiya. Talagang kailangan bigyan natin ng hustisya [ang mga biktima]."
(It's a simple issue that you resort to using guns. There's no justification to kill them in cold blood. They were even shot point-blank. We will give justice [to the victims].)