MANILA, Philippines — The Human Rights Commission (CHR) said on Monday it had opened its investigation into the death of a teenager in Rizal after he was hit by a bullet allegedly fired by police at the brother of the victim, saying he was “seriously concerned” about the incident, as it was the second police shooting in a month.
In a statement, the CHR said it had already coordinated with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and visited the victim’s family after launching its motu proprio (alone) investigation.
“The CHR is seriously concerned about this incident, especially since it is the second case this month where the author of the alleged arbitrary deprivation of life involves a police officer and the victim is a minor”, has said the commission.
The inquest follows the death of 15-year-old John Frances Ompad on August 20.
Ompad was killed after the victim’s brother, John Ace, was initially reported by Police Corporal Arnulfo Sabillo, 37, via the ‘Oplan Sita’, for driving a ‘suspicious’ vehicle.
However, the incident escalated into a chase after John Ace refused to stop, claiming Sabillo was not wearing a police uniform and appeared drunk.
The police chased John Ace until they reached the Ompad brothers’ house. There, the accused allegedly threw a helmet at Sabillo. The policeman then retaliated by shooting John Ace, but instead hit his brother John Francis.
Sabilio was also with another plainclothes companion when the incident occurred.
According to the CHR, the PNP’s operations manual is “very clear” in its guidelines for the conduct of checkpoints, including obtaining the necessary authorization from the head of the territorial unit office of the PNP, as well as wearing the prescribed uniform to carry out the operations. the checkpoint.
“And even when a legitimate checkpoint is ignored, said PNP manual reminds us that reasonable force must be used to defeat aggression,” he adds.
If the CHR recognized the arrest of Sabillo and his companion, as well as the cases of homicide and attempted homicide of which they are accused, it reminded the police of their duty to “serve and protect”.
He reiterated that acts of violence that may result in a violation of rights “should never be the first response to an assault”.
“At the same time, the country has witnessed enough human rights violations that warrant serious reforms by the institutions charged with their duties, such as the police, so that they can fully and faithfully respect their obligation to respect, protect and fulfill human rights. ” said the CHR.
Ompad’s murder comes just two weeks after 17-year-old Jerhode ‘Jemboy’ Baltazar was killed on August 5, apparently by Navotas police who mistook him for another suspect.
Criminal charges against a cop and a civilian following the death of a teenager in Rizal
Tulfo exposes Navotas cops’ mistakes in fatal mistaken identity shooting
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