Graduating student shot dead inside classroom

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Wednesday, March 26, 2014


A STUDENT who is set to graduate on Friday, March 28, was shot dead inside a classroom at Rizal National High School in Barangay Rizal, Claveria town in Misamis Oriental Monday afternoon.

Nineteen-year-old Jundry Balayong was supposed to wear his toga and join his batchmates in receiving their diploma this Friday, but his classmate Nico Labastida shot him inside the campus after an altercation Monday.

Labastida, also 19-year-old, is a resident of Barangay Managing, Claveria.

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Based on initial investigation conducted by Inspector Roque Neri, Claveria police station chief, Balayong and Labastida were having a drink outside the school.

Both were taking part in preparing for this Friday’s graduation rites.

According to Neri, the suspect and victim were having an argument allegedly over a female, although the police have yet to determine the actual motive of the killing.

In a TV Patrol news report Tuesday, a witness said Labastida got irked when Balayong reported to the former's girlfriend that he was allegedly forced to drink and smoke weed.

After a heated exchange of words, witnesses saw Balayong went back inside the campus while Labastida went somewhere.

Later, Labastida was seen entering their classroom, pulled out a .45 caliber pistol and pointed it at Balayong.

Seeing Balayong held at gunpoint, the school’s principal tried to stop Labastida but the suspect already pulled the trigger, hitting the victim on his left breast.

Labastida allegedly tried to shoot the principal but the firearm conked out. The suspect then fled the crime scene.

Balayong was brought immediately to the hospital but he died on the way. His body was brought back to his house in Claveria.

Labastida's parents could not believe what their son did. The mother cried and wondered where his son got the gun.

Balayong's family is bent on pursuing filing a case against the suspect to get justice.

Neri said the suspect surrendered himself to the managing barangay chairman around 9:30 p.m. Monday and he was escorted to the police station.

Labastida will possibly be facing multiple charges for the murder of Balayong, attempted shooting of the principal, and illegal possession of firearm. (With Stephanie V. Berganio)

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on March 27, 2014.

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