Family of slain Calbayog mayor vows to get mastermind

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 21 2022 04:52 PM

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Courtesy of Calbayog City Information Office
Courtesy of Calbayog City Information Office

MANILA—The son of slain Calbayog City, Samar Mayor Ronaldo Aquino on Friday vowed to get to the bottom of his death after state prosecutors indicted 9 police officers for murder.

"Hindi nangangahulugan na tapos na ang kaso. Patuloy pa tayong nangangalap ng karagdagang ebidensiya na magbibigay ng liwanag sa pagpatay ng aking ama," Mark Aquino told TeleRadyo.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) said Thursday it would file murder and frustrated murder cases at the Regional Trial Court of Calbayog against 9 police personnel for Aquino's death and 3 others and the wounding of a security aide.

The DOJ identified the respondents as Police Lt. Col. Harry Villar Sucayre, Police Maj. Shyrile Co Tan, Police Capt. Dino Laurente Goles, Police Lt. Julio Salcedo Armeza Jr., Police Staff Sgt. Neil Matarum Cebu, Police Staff Sgt. Edsel Tan Omega, Police Staff Sgt. Randy Caones Merelos, Police Cpl. Julius Udtujan Garcia, Police Pat. Niño Cuadra Salem and several John Does.

In a joint resolution released Jan. 19, the government panel of prosecutors said Aquino and his aides were ambushed by the police in Labuyao Bridge, Calbayog City on March 8, 2021. The police initially described the incident as a shootout.

Meanwhile, the state prosecutors dismissed the supplemental complaint of Ronald Mark against Raymund Uy and Stephen James Tan "for there is a strong indication that it is merely an afterthought".

The resolution said the affidavit of the lone witness, Jose Jay Senario, was highly suspect as the "allegations appear to be farfetched which puts his own credibility in question".

The younger Aquino believes his father's slay was politically motivated.

The mayor was on his third and last term as local chief executive, and was planning to run as vice mayor in the 2022 elections.

"Meron tayong isang pulis na tumayong testigo na nagpapatunay na meron pong kinalaman ang politika sa pagpatay sa aking ama," he said.