Police chief shoots rape suspect-A A +A
Saturday, November 3, 2012
CEBU CITY -- A rape suspect was killed in a shootout with a police official in Barangay Poblacion, Compostela, Cebu late Thursday night.
Jeneño Udtohan, 22, was on his way to visit his mother’s grave in the town’s public cemetery when the police caught up with him in Sitio Aggies at 10:45 p.m.
Six policemen were tasked to serve an alias warrant of arrest against Udtohan. Sensing the presence of authorities, Udtohan allegedly pulled out his .38 caliber revolver from his waistband and opened fire at the policemen.
Gunshots rang out around the neighborhood and left several houses with bullet holes, as the police chased Udtohan.
Senior Inspector Jaime Tolentino, the town’s police chief, was shot in the chest in the process and could have died if not for a bulletproof vest that he wore.
Tolentino, who led the operation, said he was forced to retaliate against the armed suspect. He returned fire from 10 meters away and hit Udtohan in the body.
The suspect was brought to Danao Provincial Hospital but didn’t make it alive. An autopsy was requested.
In an interview with Sun.Star Cebu, the police official said they were tipped by an informant who sighted Udtohan in the area.
He had allegedly been running away from police for the last two years after being accused of raping a girl inside his family’s comfort room in Sitio Aggies. He was not the only suspect.
Armed with a warrant issued by Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 56 Judge Teresita Abarquez-Galanida in Mandaue City last October 3, the police official, together with his men, went to the area.
Three empty shells and live ammunition for a .38 revolver, a pair of slippers and a cap that the suspect used were recovered in the crime scene.
“Nalipay ang mga tawo didto sa nahitabo kay badlungon ni siya (The people welcomed the news because he was a troublemaker),” Tolentino said.
Udtohan had allegedly slashed his victim’s private parts with a silver pendant when he and his friend raped her. She reportedly has a learning disability.
Udtohan’s friend Adonis Carasaquit was arrested and detained in the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center.
Tolentino further revealed that the suspect was linked to the murder of a fraternity member during the town’s fiesta celebration last 2009.
Udtohan had allegedly hidden in an uncle’s house in Argao while his siblings lived with their grandmother.
Aside from this, Udtohan was also allegedly involved in a spate of robbery incidents in the northern towns of Cebu Province.
“Wala gyud ni siya madakpi sauna kay idlas kayo (He always managed to evade arrest),” Tolentino said.
A ballistic examination and paraffin test will be conducted on Udtohan to determine if he had fired a gun within 72 hours before his death and whether his gun matched some of the bullets found on the crime scene.
However, the suspect’s family and neighbors told a different story.
Udtohan’s older brother Jason, 28, told Sun.Star Cebu that Udtohan was “brutally” killed.
“Salbahis kaayo sila. Ilang gibaboy akong igsuon. Pwede raman ‘ta nila dakpon (They were barbaric to him. They could have just arrested him),” he said.
Jason said that his brother was on his way to meet up with them on Thursday to celebrate Jason’s birthday and visit the grave of their mother, who died from a heart attack while they were still young.
He said he will seek the help of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR)-Central Visayas over his brother’s death.
“Niingon pa ang usa sa mga pulis nga tiwasi kuno akong igsuon. Wala baya siya’y armas (One of the policemen prodded his colleagues to make sure my brother was dead. He was not even armed),” he alleged.
Jason said his brother was shot in the chest, which was not revealed by the police. When he tried to approach the crime scene, the police didn’t allow him.
“Ila rang giguroy akong igsuon ug giitsa. Wala man lang gyu’y respeto (They dragged my brother’s body and tossed him. They gave him no respect at all),” he added.
Tolentino, for his part, said he needed to act quickly and return fire at Udtohan because it was a matter of life and death. It was the second time the police official had killed a wanted person.
Last December 24, 2011, a man accused of killing a public school teacher died during a shootout with Tolentino in Barangay Kandingan, Aloguinsan.
After receiving death threats in Aloguinsan, he said he had to buy a bulletproof vest that proved useful during last Thursday’s operation.
“Kung wala pa ‘to, patay na ‘ta ko karon. Unsaon na lang nako akong mga anak ug asawa (Without that vest, I would be a dead man now, and then what would my wife and children do?),” he said. (DSM/Sun.Star Cebu)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on November 03, 2012.