Police Officials Face Murder Case for Slay of Crime Watch Leader

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Two junior police officials who killed a 51-year-old crime watch group leader are now facing prison after a murder case has been filed against them.

Insp Markson Almeranez and Senior Insp. Magdaleno Pimentel Jr. are identified as the riding-in-tandem perpetrators of Zenaida Luz of Citizens Crime Watch last Sunday, October 9, in the municipality of Gloria, Oriental Mindoro.

Both officials-slash-gunmen are graduates from the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA).

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According to Inquirer, both suspects have already been presented to the Pinamalayan Prosecutor’s Office. Provincial director Senior Supt. Chris Birung of Oriental Mindoro Police revealed that the two individuals will undergo inquest proceedings next Wednesday afternoon.

Based on reports, Pimentel and Almeranez wore civilian clothes, rode in tandem on a motorcycle, drove to Barangay Lamigaya Sunday, around 11 p.m., and shot dead Luz in front of her house.

Local village chief (barangay captain) of Brgy. Banutan then made a distress call. A police mobile team immediately responded and went after Pimentel and Almeranez after they saw Luz lying on the pavement. During the chase, one of the suspects opened fire on the police team which was then reciprocated. Both the suspects were wounded.

A Manila Bulletin report stated that the suspects tried to disguise themselves.

Almeranez wore a mask and a wig. On the other hand, Pimentel wore a bonnet and jacket.

Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor, Mimaropa police regional director, disclosed that an investigation will be conducted by the regional internal affairs service. The investigation will be on the administrative liability of the police officials.

Pimentel and Almeranez are still in the hospital. They are, however, under the custody of the Gloria police and the provincial public safety company.

Meanwhile, PNP spokesperson Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos commended the swift action by the Mindoro police. He said that immediately filing criminal charges against its members is a proof that the PNP does not to tolerate wrongdoings especially when it is committed by its personnel.

“The swift actions of the Mindoro Oriental (provincial police office) to respond to the distress call, arrest the suspects, and file criminal charges before the court clearly manifest the stand of the PNP not to tolerate any wrongdoings even from among our ranks,” he said.

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