PHILIPPINES. Tarlac: A police officer stirs the Filipino public over a disturbing video surfaced and shared on social media on December 20. A mother and her son gunned down at point-blank in Tarlac. Victim’s relative captured and uploaded the recorded video of the incident.
The video-capture of the police officer was shared widely on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Watching the horrifying incident caused dismay and anger among the Filipinos. The uploaded video gets deleted moments after being upload. However, some viewers managed to download a copy of the video.
Argument over noise which caused killing
The conflict started when Frank Gregorio used a Boga or improvised-noise canon that causes irritable noise. Police Senior Master Sergeant Jonel Nuezca with his daughter confronted him and his mother Sonya Gregorio. The heated argument between them leads to the shooting of both.
A relative of the victim managed to record four minutes and 41 seconds video that got shared on social media.
Reaction from government and police
The police officer surrenders to Rosales Pangasinan Municipal Police Station with the weapon used in killing the 52-year-old mother and 25-year-old son. Police Lieutenant Colonel Noriel Rombaoa said in a report, “The suspect confronted them (victims) about the right-of-way that leads to the shooting incident. But, the heated argument between the son and the elderly mother triggered the rage of the suspect.”
Police Sr. Mstr. Sgt. Nuezca faces six other cases presented on 21 Dec. 2020. The Philippine National Police (PNP) plans to resolve this case in 30 days. However, the Senate and Congress demand to reform of the PNP.
Senator Risa Hontiveros said, “Where is our society heading? If a law enforcer and father feel so invincible, he thinks it is right to murder an unarmed mother and her son. Thus, without missing a heartbeat shot them on the heads in front of his child. Also, shot their dead bodies twice.”
President Duterte on human rights
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) advised the Filipino public to stop verbal attacks on the police officer’s daughter even she contributed to the conflict. It can add to the trauma to her and needed tremendous psychosocial and psychological therapy. Also, the public should refrain from exposing the face of the child.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said on 21 Dec. 2020, “We condemn the incident in Tarlac. To clarify that this is not service-related. Thus, the police officer cannot invoke any defense relating to his duty in his murder case.”
President Rodrigo Duterte recognizes that there are police officers who abuse their roles. He affirms to the public that the rest of the police upholds their duty to protect and serve. However, President Duterte encourages them to shoot first without worrying about human rights.
President Duterte stated on 3 Dec. 2020, “I don’t care about human rights. So, I will assume full legal responsibility, not you (police officers).”