A POLICE officer in Negros Occidental is under investigation for allegedly shooting three persons in two separate shooting incidents in two towns Tuesday night, August 27.
Police Colonel Romeo Baleros, provincial police director, said the Provincial Internal Affairs Service (Pias) will subject Police Corporal Ace Pacificar to motu proprio investigation for possible administrative liability, while the two concerned police stations will probe his criminal offenses.
Baleros said he talked to Pacificar when the latter underwent drug testing at the Nocppo headquarters Thursday, August 30.
Baleros said Pacificar is currently on "floating status" because of the two shooting incidents.
The first incident happened in Hinigaran town around 8 p.m. when Corporal Ace Pacificar confronted 20-year-old Jiene Mar Baya, who was talking to his father in front of a sari-sari store, where Pacificar and his two other companions were allegedly about to start a drinking session in Barangay Gargato.
Major James Latayon, town police chief, said Pacificar asked Baya if he is a resident in the village because he started to have suspicions about the latter's presence in the village.
While they were having a conversation, Pacificar reportedly fired his gun at him when he saw the latter getting something from his pocket, which he thought was a gun, Latayon said.
He said the shooting incident happened when Pacificar misunderstood Baya, who was supposed to get his cellular phone from his pocket.
Baya sustained a lone gunshot wound in the neck and was rushed to a private hospital here while Pacificar fled on board his motorcycle.
Police recovered two fired bullets of .9mm caliber. However, Latayon said he is not sure if it was from Pacificar's issued firearm.
Latayon said Baya and his father who are residents of Barangay Quiwi were supposed to have dinner at their relative's house in Gargato village when Pacificar mistook them as suspicious individuals.
Pacificar then met an accident on the road in Barangay M.H. Del Pilar in the neighboring Pontevedra town while fleeing the previous shooting incident in Hinigaran.
Captain Rhojn Darell Nigos, town police chief, said Pacificar fell from his motorcycle in a grassy area of a blind curve.
Nigos said Aldwin Provido who was driving his motorcycle, along with his companion Billy Mindanao saw Pacificar, and tried to assist him.
But when Provido came near him, the police officer allegedly shot him, while his companion was hit by a stray bullet, Nigos said.
Both victims were rushed to Valladolid District Hospital.
Pacificar surrendered to Nigos and also turned over his issued Glock17 firearm with six ammunition of .9mm caliber.
Nigos said Pacificar told him that he thought that the two victims were family members of Baya, who were chasing him to get revenge.
He also said they cannot yet tell if he was drunk when he committed the crime.
Pacificar is assigned at Public Safety Mobile Force Company in Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo) headquarters.
Despite Pacificar's justifications and alibis, Baleros said he will not tolerate such "invalid" actions of a police officer.
Baleros said he will recommend Pacificar's transfer to the Regional Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit (RPHAU) at the Police Regional Office (PRO)-Western Visayas headquarters in Iloilo City while he is being investigated.
But Baleros said he must face the consequences of his actions.
He is facing attempted homicide charges in relation to the Hinigaran incident, while frustrated homicide and attempted murder will be filed against him for the Pontevedra incident.
Pacificar has not issued any statement as of press time.