CEBU

Ambush of former police officer under investigation

POLICE investigators in Cebu City are now pursuing three angles in the ambush-slay of retired police officer Edmund “Bernie” Junco.

Junco, along with his wife, was driving his pickup when they were ambushed by unidentified assailants in Sitio Nasipit, Brgy. Talamban on Tuesday afternoon, Sept. 15, 2020.

Police Colonel Josefino Ligan, Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) director, said they are pursuing different angles concerning Junco’s slay including his previous job as a police officer, personal affairs and his business.

Ligan said Junco operated a pawnshop and sold jewelry when he was still in the police service.

Another angle is Junco’s work in the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Central Visayas, in which he was involved in the arrest and prosecution of various criminals.

Ligan said Junco was reportedly involved in various “significant” cases when he was still with the CIDG 7.

Ligan added that they can’t conclude that Junco’s death was due to involvement in the illegal drug trade as the victim was not even named in President Rodrigo Duterte’s list of police officers who were involved in illegal activities.

Despite this, Ligan said he won’t create a task group to focus on the investigation.

He, however, assigned the case to the Talamban Police Station in coordination with CCPO’s Intelligence Branch and the CIDG 7.

Police also disclosed to the media a footage from a CCTV camera in a gasoline station showing Junco’s white car parked in the middle of the road and was suddenly hit by a motorbike with two passengers, who were the suspects.

The victim was still able to run to his car, while suspects managed to get and use another motorcycle to escape.

Talamban Police Station Chief Police Captain Jonathan Bethoven Taneo said the victim was shot in the neck, on his left side and stomach and was declared dead on arrival at the North General hospital. His wife Betty who is in a safe condition now, was hit in the back and in her hand.

Taneo added that there is a big possibility that the victim’s car was being followed by the suspects and the two were looking for an opportunity to overtake to shoot.

Among the injured were two delivery drivers named Reymar Plasencia Nulla, 28, and Teofisto Catalan Cortes Jr., 27.

Police also recovered six empty shells from a 9-mm caliber pistol and a bullet from a .45 caliber pistol.

Ligan said according to their initial information, the motorbike was registered under the name of Mark Joseph Matias of Mount View Kalubihan, Brgy. Talamban.

The Land Transportation Officem including the Highway Patrol Group, will also investigate the abandoned motorcycle that was first ridden by the suspects.

Based on data provided by Police Regional Office 7, at least six active and former police officers have been killed this year.

Police are still conducting investigations on those other cases. (AYB / MMC)


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