HOUSE parents of Social Development Center (SDC) in Bacolod City were directed to explain the escape of a 15-year-old boy facing robbery charges last week.
Pacita Tero, head of the City Department of Social Services Development, said yesterday she called the attention of the house parents and the investigation is ongoing.
Tero said the boy escaped while there was an ongoing activity inside the facility for children in conflict with the law.
The Police Station 4 reported that the boy, who robbed a doughnut store, was arrested on Monday at a computer shop in Barangay Villamonte and was again placed in the custody of the SDC.
SDC has 16 house parents with three guards from Public Order Safety Office divided into two shifts.
Tero said the SDC can accommodate about 50 minors and it is the responsibility of the house parents to monitor their activities.
Last month, Tero issued a memorandum to the house parents telling them not to give tasks to minors outside the facility.
Tero said she was informed that sometimes the house parents allowed the minors to go out to buy something.
“The minors are also monitoring the house parents and if they have a chance to escape, they will grab the opportunity,” she added.
Tero said some of the minors are facing theft and robbery charges, but those who are below 15 years old have no criminal liability, and if their offense is imposable below six years of imprisonment, they will be turned over to the barangay for an intervention program.
She acknowledged that the SDC, located inside the Bacolod City Police Office compound in Barangay Taculing, has a short wall and has a damaged gate.
“We cannot perfect it, but we are trying to rehabilitate the facility to guard the children,” she said.
Tero said for 2018, she proposed a budget for the rehabilitation and development of the SDC building.