Barangay captain facing
murder raps ‘not hiding’
A barangay captain in Pontevedra, Negros Occidental, who was charged for frustrated and attempted murder, yesterday debunked claims that he went into hiding, saying he was busy attending to the needs of his relatives, who were shot in the town on May 2.
Aurelio Garita, barangay captain of Miranda, Pontevedra, said he was surprised to know that he was being charged for frustrated and attempted murder, and claimed that it was his family that was the aggrieved party.
Garita’s brother, Ariel, and cousin, Alexin Garita, were injured during an alleged shootout in Brgy. Miranda, Pontevedra, involving members of the Garita and Villaspin families.
Rodrigo Villaspin died in the alleged shootout, while his brother, Ricardo, was injured. Hit by stray bullets were Melvin Rodriguez, Jevic Meguito and Jordan Onate, 13.
In an interview with MBC Aksyon Radyo, Brgy. Capt. Garita said he is ready to face and answer the charges against him in a proper forum.
He said he was with his wife, children and relatives, and two members of the Pontevedra police station, to watch and enjoy a show at the barangay plaza covered court, when the incident took place.
“We never had the intention to create violence,” Garita said, stressing that they were not armed. He said they were on their way out from the covered court, with two policemen, to verify the source of gunshots that hit two of his family members, when they were also fired at.
When the two policemen fired back, he said the suspects immediately withdrew.
Garita admitted that they were demoralized by the failure of the Pontevedra police to take action on the request for security by his family.
Troopers of the 3rd PNP Maneuver Platoon are now stationed in the barangay to maintain peace and order.
Two counts of frustrated murder were also filed against Ricardo Villaspin and his brother, Rene, and one count of frustrated murder each against Rodsal Gapulan and Ariel Garita.
Pontevedra police investigators recovered 11 empty shells of a .45 caliber pistol and 357 magnum revolver, two slugs of a 357 and .45 caliber pistol, four live bullets of a .45 caliber pistol, and a bladed weapon from the site of the incident.*GPB
The Police Regional Office-6 Intelligence Unit apprehended a man wanted for homicide at about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at his residence in Brgy. 16, Bacolod City.
Police Officer 2 Joshua Barile identified the one arrested as Joemarie Pacaña, 23, of Bag-ong Dalan in Brgy. 16.
Barile said he and Police Officer 1 Jerome Javier made the apprehension by virtue of an arrest warrant issued by Regional Trial Court Branch 50 Judge Franklin Demonteverde, who set the suspect’s bail at P40,000.
Barile said Pacaña and his companions who were the subject of a week’s surveillance were charged for homicide after they allegedly killed their foe in a gang war some time in 2009 at the Bacolod downtown area.
He added that Pacaña is also a suspect in the robbery of an Indian national in Brgy. 16 last year.
Station 2 commander, Chief Insp. Noel Polines also reported the arrest of Radny Granada, 25, of Purok Cabugwason in Brgy. Mansilingan, Bacolod for alleged illegal possession of firearms at about 8:40 p.m. Tuesday in Brgy. 3.
Granada was apprehended by Police Officers 1 Richard Canja and Tony Hechanova and recovered an improvised shotgun or “sulpak,” a live shotshell of a 12-guage shotgun and a pair of scissors from him, police records showed.
The policemen said the suspect threatened them and tried to wrest the firearm of one of them.
Charges for illegal possession of firearms are being readied against Granada, who is now detained at Police Station 2.*APN