Stranger tries to stab Pique-A A +A
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
AN UNIDENTIFIED man tried to stab Renante Pique with a thick barbecue stick outside the Chief Justice Fernan Memorial Hall of Justice in Cebu City yesterday morning.
Pique was unharmed, but took the precaution of reporting to the police about the incident, which happened after the hearing on the kidnapping with homicide case the Piques have filed against Bella Ruby Santos.
Santos and her British boyfriend, Ian Charles Griffiths, stand accused of being responsible for the kidnapping and death of the Pique couple’s daughter, Ellah Joy.
In a phone interview, Pique said it was his wife, Ligaya, who noticed the man. He said he turned around after Ligaya shouted, raised his fist and challenged the man to stab him.
“Nidiretso dayon siya’g dagan (The man suddenly ran away from me),” he said. He went to the Fuente Police Station to have the incident recorded in the blotter.
Before the incident, he said tension flared up when they were on the ground floor and he heard one of Santos’ supporters yelling at him.
“Nisiyagit siya nga pataka lang mi’g papriso (The person shouted we sent the wrong person to detention),” he said.
Pique was with Ligaya and his mother-in-law, Adelaida Caparida. He said over 20 supporters of Santows swarmed around them and argued with them.
Ligaya and Caparida argued at one point with Santos’ sister, Anna Marion Lalican. A security guard and two police officers tried to pacify both parties.
However, Pique said that Santos’ supporters did not hit him, Ligaya and Caparida.
Cebu Provincial Police Office Director Patrocinio Comendador promised to assign a police escort to Pique in the next hearing.
The defense yesterday accused the prosecution of delaying the case after the latter came “unprepared” for the pre-trial conference in the sala of Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 6 Judge Ester Veloso.
Veloso reset the proceedings to March 11, after Cebu Provincial Prosecutor Jerome Abarca said they needed time to prepare.
Julius Caesar Entise, Santos’s counsel, said there he could not believe that the prosecution was not ready when there are “several lawyers” on their panel.
“They can’t even immediately give the names of their additional witnesses,” he said.
In yesterday’s hearing, the prosecution was represented by Abarca and lawyer Noeme Abarrientos of the Children’s Legal Bureau.
In a hearing last Nov. 19, the prosecution said they only have three witnesses to present. But Abarca told the court yesterday they still have six witnesses.
Entise objected that two witnesses were “recycled” by the prosecution and did not need to be presented in court again. They are Josito Perez and SPO2 Marcelo Quevedo.
Judge Veloso, however, said during the proceeding that it was the prosecution’s call to let Perez and Quevedo take the witness stand again.
Rameses Villagonzalo, the other defense lawyer, said one of their witnesses is Senior Supt. Erson Digal, who was the CPPO chief when Ellah Joy was found dead on Feb. 9, 2011.
Entise said that Santos cried after she learned the resolution on her petition to post bail was not yet ready.
“We will wait for the judge to expedite the case,” he said.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 29, 2013.