PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) Chief Dionardo Carlos ordered on Thursday, December 9, 2021, the creation of a Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) to expedite the resolution of the killing of veteran journalist Jesus “Jess” Malabanan.

Carlos said the SITG will be composed of investigating teams from the Regional Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Forensic Group, Regional Intelligence Unit, and Calbayog City Police Station under the supervision of the Deputy Regional Director for Operations of Police Regional Office (PRO)-Eastern Visayas.

“The PNP is doing its best to immediately identify and arrest the person responsible for Malabanan’s death,” he said in a statement.

“We understand the call of the family and different groups to expedite the investigation of the case. These requests will not fall on deaf ears. Establishing the motive of the case can help us in going to the bottom of this. We just need the cooperation of the witnesses,” he added.

On Wednesday evening, December 8, Malabanan was shot dead by motorcycle-riding gunmen inside his house in Barangay San Joaquin, Tinambacan District, Calbayog City, Samar.

Carlos said the witnesses could hardly identify the gunman but they saw him fleeing the crime scene using a motorcycle together with a companion.

Checkpoints were immediately established in the vicinity for the possible interception of the gunmen.

The SITG is currently gathering copies of CCTV footage in the area as part of the investigation.

They will also coordinate with the family amid reports that the victim had been receiving threats recently because of his profession, or if there are other personal angles that are worth looking into. (SunStar Philippines)