Test result ‘clears’ cops in probe on robber’s death-A A +A
Thursday, July 5, 2012
A BALLISTIC test showed that the bullet that killed a suspected robber in Barangay Talamban last June 21 did not come from the firearm of any of the five policemen who ran after him.
Faustino Navarro Jr.’s firearm tested positive in the same test, which means that the bullet that killed him came from his own gun.
The firearms of five policemen from the Talamban Police Station, including its chief, were subjected to a ballistic examination to find out if any of them shot Navarro.
Navarro, 34, a resident of Barangay Punay in Aloguinsan town, died after a grenade exploded in his hands while he was trying to run away from policemen in Sitio Tigbao in Talamban two weeks ago.
A 9mm caliber was also recovered from his possession.
The autopsy result, however, showed that Navarro died from a gunshot wound.
Investigation and Detective Management Branch Chief Bonifacio Garciano said that after pulling the grenade’s pin, Navarro also might have shot himself.
He also said that Navarro could be a member of some cult, as a red handkerchief with different markings was recovered from Navarro at the time of his death.
Although the ballistic exam initially cleared the policemen, Garciano said they still have to draft a resolution that will clear them and close the case against the officers, including Talamban Police Station Chief Michael Angelo Beltran.
Beltran said they were responding to an alarm on an armed person in Sitio Tigbao when they chanced upon four men who were allegedly transacting outside a store. One of them was Navarro.
When they saw the policemen, the four men ran away. Navarro, however, got cornered in an empty lot.
Beltran said they were 30 meters away from Navarro when they heard an explosion. When they checked on him, he was already dead, with his limbs torn off.
He said they didn’t fire at the suspect.
Beltran said Navarro tried to lob a hand grenade during the chase. As he was taking off the pin, he reportedly fell into a ditch and seconds later, the grenade exploded in his hand.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 05, 2012.