CANDONI, Neg. Occ. - Help protect your police.
The appeal was made yesterday by Senior Supt. William Señoron, officer-in-charge of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, and Chief Supt. Conrado Capa, police director of Negros Island Region, during the burial of slain Police Officer 1 Henry Vell Pacheco in Candoni, Negros Occidental, that was attended by hundreds of town residents and police officers.
“Through your information and cooperation, you may also save the lives of your police,” Señoron said.
Pacheco and PO3 Joe Harry Peralta were both killed in an ambush on Feb. 18 in Brgy. Caningay, Candoni, an incident claimed by the New People's Army Armando Sumayang Command.
The ambush also caused injuries to two policemen and two civilians.
Señoron said the ambush will not deter them from the delivery of public order and safety, even in the hinterlands, but with caution this time.
Chief Supt. Conrado Capa, regional police director of Negros Island Region, admitted that there was an “ intelligence gap” on their part, apparently referring to the ambush of the NPA, that was staged more than a kilometer away from the poblacion.
Capa likened the police to a “fish” in the river, which is a community. “Without the support of the community, we will not survive,” he said.
He also lauded PO1 Jay Arroyo, driver of the ambushed police patrol car, for his presence of mind. If not for him, he added, all of the six Candoni policemen may have been killed, too.
Arroyo and PO1 Modesto Bena, were both injured in the ambush, while their two other colleagues were unhurt.
Capa, who was emotional during his speech during the necrological rites of Pacheco, held at the St. Joseph Chapel in Brgy. Banga, Candoni, lambasted the NPA for destroying the reputations of the two slain police officers.
The NPA linked the two slain police officers to illegal activities in Candoni, which was vehemently denied by the police and the families of the victims.
“They were just office personnel”, Capa said.
Police investigations showed that the scene of the incident is a populated area, and a civilian was hit by a stray bullet.
They were anticipating the attack of the Candoni police station, and that prompted him to beef up the town police force, Capa said. The NPA, however, staged the ambush, which they did not expect to happen in a populated area.*GPB
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