Authorities are now looking for village chief Achilles Jude Babaran of Barangay Pagatpat after the Regional Trial Court Branch 37 issued on Friday, September 2, a warrant for Babaran’s arrest for two counts of rape.
Police Chief Inspector Ariel Phillip Pontillas, chief of Agora Police Station said the warrant was signed by Judge Jose Escobido last August 26 but was only received by authorities and the family on Friday.
He said they have been searching for Babaran for the last two days but apparently, Babaran has been on leave and has left town.
"Last Thursday ug gahapon, Biyernes, didto mi sa iyang balay pero wala man daw, nag-leave pa, unya out-of-town," he said.
"Mabutang gyud nga wanted or fugitive person na siya kay ang korte man ang nag-order ani nga ma-under na sa iyang jurisdiction. On-going pa gihapon atong manhunt operation sa iya, until such time nga madakpan nato siya," Pontillas added.
The warrant for Babaran’s arrest stems from a rape complainant filed by a seventeen-year-old girl who claimed Babaran raped her on two occasions--June 19, 2015 and September 22, 2015.
The complainant, however, was found dead inside the bathroom of a hotel room on July 12.
The girl was allegedly killed by a certain Jason Caramba who remain at-large.
Despite the complainant’s death, the family filed a rape complaint against Babaran on the same month she was killed.
The victim's mother said she had mixed emotions upon receiving the warrant.
"Nalipay ang among pamilya pero siyempre, nagguol kokay wala man diha si Kapitan, dili man padakop, wala pa daw nahagilap. Kung ni-surrener pa siya, diristo na unta, dili na unta nako ipa-media," she said.
"Gihangyo nako nga mo-surrender na unta siya ug iyang atubangon ang iyang sala nga nabuhat," she added.
Reached for a comment, Babaran confirmed a warrant of arrest was issued against him but refused to answer any more questions.
"No comment sa ako. Ila napud ko pakaulawan," he said.
Babaran is also being accused of having knowledge on the death of the rape victim.