WHEN he was still a police officer, Terry Tubalado received nine commendation medals, two efficiency medals, two Mindanao service medals, and an anti-dissidence medal.
Tubalado died last Tuesday night in a shootout with police operatives who tried to search his house in Toledo City and arrest him on drug charges.
Tubalado reportedly got addicted to illegal drugs, which caused him to abandon his duties as police officer 3 and eventually led to his dismissal from the service in 2014.
More than a week ago, Tubalado's relatives asked the police to arrest him so he can be confined in a drug rehabilitation facility.
Tubalado’s relatives complained of being harassed by the ex-cop. His neighbors alleged that he fired his gun when he was high on drugs.
Tubalado also scared a bystander by throwing a grenade at the latter, but it did not explode because he did not pull the pin.
Last Tuesday, at past 9 p.m., Tubalado fired at a team of the Provincial Intelligence Branch (PIB) that was supposed to implement a court-issued search warrant on his house in Barangay Luray, Toledo City.
Tubalado missed but a PIB operative hit him twice.
PIB operatives rushed Tubalado to a hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival by the attending doctor.
Supt. Rodolfo Albotra Jr., PIB chief, said they received reports Tubalado wore his uniform when he went inside drug dens to sniff illegal drugs.
Tubalado reportedly ran outside the Cebu Provincial Police Office headquarters upon learning there was drug testing going on. He did not report for duty.
Tubalado was still with the Provincial Public Safety Batallion Company at the time.
Although he was dismissed, Tubalado allegedly pretended to be a cop and arrested drug pushers to extort money from them.
“He conducted 'hulidap' operations against drug pushers. His aim was money or drugs. He also asked money from his family,” said Albotra in Cebuano.
The police official said that he did not receive reports that Tubalado was engaged in selling illegal drugs.
Seized from Tubalado were a .45 pistol, a magazine with eight bullets, four empty shells of a .45 pistol, two packs of shabu, a glass burner and drug paraphernalia.
Tubalado was recruited by the Police Regional Office (PRO) 13 in 2003 and transferred to PRO 7 in 2012.
Albotra said they are monitoring active and dismissed police officers who are using illegal drugs or engaging themselves in selling drugs.
“We are very serious on this because they give us bad image,” he said.