ANGELES CITY -- The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) has found a new lead in the brutal killing of a nursing student here last year.
Chief Inspector Randy Glenn Silvio, chief of the Pampanga CIDG based in Barangay Pampang here, said two students of Angeles University Foundation (AUF) saw the victim being accompanied by several students on her way to the boarding house where she was killed.
Keith Valerio Ballesteros, 16, a former nursing student of AUF, was brutally killed inside her boarding house in Barangay Salapungan on September 3, 2009.
It has been five months since the killing but no suspects have been arrested and charged yet.
"Ang latest po, may nakunan kaming dalawang students from AUF ng statements na nakita yung victim na may kasamang students ng umuwi sa boarding house before she was found dead," Silvio said.
Silvio, however, said the witnesses cannot identify the students who accompanied Ballesteros before she was murdered.
"Naghahanap po kami [ngayon] ng picture sa AUF para ma identify natin yung mga kasama ni Keith at makunan na rin sila ng statement," Silvio added.
Earlier, leaders of Barangay Salapungan told Sun.Star Pampanga that the girl's ghost was felt by a Bantay Bayan member and a nursing student of AUF in two instances.
Salapungan chairman Robert Yeen said one of Ballestero's classmates saw the victim sitting and crying along the road leading to the boarding house where she was killed.
Frightened of what she experienced, the victim's classmate screamed, making the residents in the neighborhood go out of their homes.
Ruben Mananquil, assistant executive officer of Barangay Salapungan, said he also encountered Ballestero's ghost.
Mananquil is the one of the first responders who entered Ballestero's boarding house on the day of the murder.
Yeen said the victim's soul might be giving some clues that will lead authorities in solving the case.
Ballesteros relatives posted placards of the victim along the roads, Barangay Hall, and other places within the village.
The posters bear statement "Justice for Keith."
Ballesteros, a native of Arayat town, sustained several stab wounds on the body, head bash and other serious injuries.
Ballesteros' body was found by Mary Luz Valerio Flores, the victim's cousin and roommate, inside the comfort room of the boarding house around 4 p.m. on September 3.
Police stated that the victim was found drooped in a plastic basin full of water.
Around 11 a.m. on September 3, Ballesteros returned to the boarding house to take her lunch.
When Flores returned home around 4 p.m. on the same date, she found the victim sprawled inside the comfort room.
Flores then sought the assistance of Bantay Bayan members in Barangay Salapungan who later relayed the incident to the city police. (Reynaldo G. Navales)