Briones: There are good cops in Region 7

I, too, am beginning to get curious.

Why is Police Regional Office 7 Director Jose Espino so emphatic in claiming that there are no “gangster” cops in his area of responsibility?

At first it was an assurance that there are no “gangster” cops in Central Visayas. Then, perhaps realizing that he just said something no one would believe, he doubled-back and said that “he is certain” there are no scalawags under his command, adding that they continue to monitor police officials who were listed for being involved in the illegal drug trade.

Well, we all know that by “being certain,” Espino basically admitted that he was just making an assumption. After all, where is his evidence to support his claim?

And he couldn’t have been making a presumption since it’s next-to-impossible to believe that there are no dirty cops. The fact that they are monitoring some police officials already rendered his claim moot.

It’s almost like Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma assuring the flock that there are no sexually-active priests, or Palma saying he is certain that everyone who entered the priesthood was just answering to a higher calling.

However, I can assure you that for every bad cop out there, there are dozens who actually serve and protect the public.

Take for instance, SPO2 Delicio Esconde, a jailer at the Danao City Police Station’s detention facility.

The 55-year-old, who is four months shy or retirement, risked his life to save a six-year-old boy from drowning earlier this month.

According to Esconde, he and his colleagues were celebrating their Christmas party at one of the city’s resorts.

After eating, he decided to go out for a stroll when he chanced upon the boy drowning in the swimming pool.

(I know. Where were the boy’s parents or guardians and didn’t the resort have a lifeguard in attendance? But that’s not the point of this column.)

So Esconde, without any second thought, jumped into the water still with his clothes on to fish out the boy.

“Nabasa akong selpon ug akong pitaka. Bisag basa akong sinina, apil gihapon ko sa sayaw sa party (My cellphone and wallet got wet. My clothes, too, but I still danced afterwards),” he told SunStar Cebu’s Kevin A. Lagunda.

For his deed, Chief Insp. Gerard Ace Pelare, the city police commander, named the latter as Police Non-Commissioned Officer of the Week.

Esconde said he only did what any normal human being would do.

Apparently, doing good deeds is second nature to this policeman, whose tours of duty include police stations in Pinamungajan, Alcoy, Naga City and the provincial police headquarters.

Word has reached Pelare that Esconde has been using his money to buy medicines for sick detainees. He has also helped detainees who have no way of connecting with their families.

If Espino only assured the public that there are still policemen like Esconde and that the PRO 7 director was certain that they are the norm as opposed to the exception, then he wouldn’t be drawing so much flak.
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