“Bacolod City is no gay killing field”
City police director Senior Supt. Ricardo de la Paz emphasized that yesterday in his report on the recent gay killings to the City Peace and Order Council at the Bacolod Government Center.
De la Paz said there were five gay killings in Bacolod in less than 10 months but these were only isolated cases. He said these were not hate crimes as the killings were not successive and there were different motives and suspects.
On June 30, the body of Giovani Preta, 49, of Brgy. Sum-ag was fished out from a portion of the Magsungay river in Brgy. Alijis with at least 30 stab wounds, and the suspect, Jee Arr Mendoza, 20, of Purok San Jose in Brgy. Alijis, was arrested and charged in court.
Ian Sherwin Sandoval of Victorias City, Negros Occidental, a call center agent, was found dead at his rented room at the Ester Pension House in Bacolod on Sept. 18. He succumbed to at least 17 stab wounds and the two suspects, alleged callboys, are still unidentified.
Rommel Decena, 46, of Zone 8 in Brgy. Handumanan was slashed in the neck on October 1 by John Eric Trinio, 29, of Phase 3 also of the same barangay, who was arrested and charged in court.
On May 10, Dr. Andres Gumban was killed at his house at the Regent Pearl Homes Subdivision in Brgy. Alijis, by suspects Fof Pascual 18, of Sagay City and a 16-year-old from Cadiz.
Pascual and the minor were apprehended right after the incident and have already been charged. Their arraignment is scheduled on June 13 before the court of Judge Ray Alan Drilon.
Just last week, Eddie Bolatayo, 21, of Brgy. Canturay, Sipalay City, an alleged pimp, was also brutally killed and his body was recovered at the Bacolod Reclamation area. Four days later on Monday, one of the suspects, Erwin Alberio of Estancia Iloilo, was arrested and has now been charged while the other suspect remains at large.
De la Paz said he plans to meet with the members of the lesbian, gay and bisexual community in Bacolod through the “Ang Ladad” group so they can exchange ideas and he can inform them about preventive measures so they will not be victimized.
He added that, amidst these gay killings, the Bacolod police will launch an intensified campaign against male prostitutes.*APN