HER legs and arms were tied with duct tape and her head, face down on the backseat, was covered in blood-soaked cloth.
Agnelen Ego-ogan Uy, 33, was found slumped on the backseat of a green Kia Picanto sedan parked on Almendras St. in Barangay Mabolo, Cebu City at 5:55 a.m. yesterday.
She was lying face down, her legs were between the two front seats and her upper body on the back seat.
She had a gunshot wound on the left side of her nape. A three-liter water container filled with gasoline was found at the foot of the front passenger seat.
The single person of interest identified by the police as of yesterday was her husband, Wayne Cristopher Uy, 40, from whom she was estranged.
Wayne was invited for questioning at the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) Homicide Section at 8 a.m. yesterday.
Wayne took a paraffin test to check if he had fired a gun recently, and was fingerprinted.
By 6 p.m., the police still had no reason to hold him, so they turned him over to his lawyer.
A certain JR is under police custody after he told police that he was in the car with the couple last Wednesday, said Chief Insp. David Señor, spokesperson for the case.
JR said he saw Wayne holding a duct tape and that Wayne then instructed him and another male companion in the car to get off the vehicle and take a cab instead.
The petition to annul the marriage of Wayne and Agnelen is pending in court.
They had been living separately in the last four years, with their three children living with Agnelen.
Wayne said he drove the car with Agnelen from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday, but he had no hand in her death.
He said they talked in person since they were now having their marriage annulled.
He checked his wife’s body at the Rolling Hills Funeral Homes in Cebu City two hours after it was discovered in the car.
A wound on Wayne’s lower lip caught the attention of a police officer, who later asked him how he got the wound. “Wala ra ni (It’s nothing),” Wayne replied.
The sedan (YDL-514) was parked on the road since Wednesday night, a security guard of a nearby establishment said.
Wilfredo Pase, 33, recalled seeing the car parked there when he arrived at work past 7 p.m.
At 5:55 a.m. yesterday, when Pase was about to check the water meter in the area, the car was still there.
He peeped in and saw legs belonging to a woman and these were tied up. Pase told reporters that he called his fellow guard and requested him to call the police.
Homicide investigator SPO3 Felomino Mendaros said the woman might not have been killed in the area. She must have been brought there after she was shot.
Mendaros said the police suspect that Agnelen’s killer(s) may have been planning to burn the car based on the presence of the gasoline.
An empty shell of a .45 firearm was found inside the car.
Agnelen’s black shoulder bag, which contained a roll of duct tape, jewelry, money, identification cards and wallets, was in the baggage compartment.
The car doors were not locked.
The area on Almendras St. where the vehicle was found is not accessible to jeepneys. Most of the vehicles that pass there are private-owned, Mendaros said.
A nearby closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera’s footage showed a man alighting from the car at around 7 p.m. Wednesday. He did not return to the car.
Señor, the spokesperson, said the footage is not clear enough to identify the man’s face. The footage needs to be enhanced, he said.
He said the investigators are verifying Wayne’s account.
“As of this time, he is our person of interest. We will focus on him,” Señor said.
Last Wednesday, Agnele was seen with Wayne in the car and in some establishments in the cities of Cebu and Mandaue from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Wayne claimed two motorcycle-riding men waylaid their vehicle at the North Reclamation Area at around 7 p.m.
One of the men pointed a gun to his head and ordered him to get out of the car, he said.
He told police that when he alighted from the vehicle, the two men hopped in and sped off with his wife aboard.
Wayne reported the incident to the Subangdaku Police Station in Mandaue City at 10:25 p.m., more than three hours after the alleged incident.
“Na-shock man gud ko. Unusual. Wa na ko katingog ba. Nagtuyok-tuyok na ko, tan-awon nako og naa bay gasunod (I was shocked. It was unusual. I couldn’t talk and I would always look behind me, afraid that other men would come for me),” he said.
Wayne said he thought he was about to be held hostage that time because he is a businessman. He owns a lending firm and is a co-owner of an information technology business.
He said he had repeatedly received death threats from his wife.
According to the records of the Subangdaku Police Station in Mandaue City, Wayne reported last Aug. 13 that he caught his wife sending sweet and sexually provocative text messages to a certain Jay.
The blotter reported that the wife “was even pregnant with her previous boyfriend named Alex, which she aborted to protect her reputation.”
The blotter report said Wayne was allegedly threatened by his wife, whom he quoted as saying, “Dili nako katulgan ron adlawa, patyon gyud tika (I won’t sleep until I kill you).”
Agnelen then allegedly stab him with scissors.
At the funeral house yesterday, Wayne showed police and reporters a scar on his belly.
Three days after the alleged stabbing, Wayne went back to the same police station to report that his wife damaged the front of his Kia Picanto with a knife. Agnelen also reportedly vandalized the windshield, as witnessed by the security guard of Deca Homes subdivision in Mandaue.
Homicide investigators and Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak checked the Picanto’s plate number yesterday and found it registered to Greg Victor Gabison, a college dean at the University of San Jose-Recoletos.
Gabison, in radio interviews shortly after his name was mentioned in radio reports, said he sold the vehicle last year to Wayne, his former business partner.
He said registration details have not been changed yet, but he can show the deed of sale.
According to the deed of sale, the car was bought by Minecraft Tech Consultancy, a company owned by Wayne.
Gabison said he last saw Wayne July this year. He said he had met Agnelen only once, about five years ago.
Since the Uys’ separation, their three children have lived with Agnelen in Talisay City.
Wayne said he had been sending money to his wife for their children’s needs.
Wayne lives in Mandaue City although he often stays in his parents’ house in Poblacion Pardo in Cebu City, according to Gabison.
Identification cards found in the wallet of Agnelen showed that she was a human resource manager and was taking a care giving course.