Gun seized from drug suspect, owned by cop

THE Police Regional Office (PRO) in Davao revealed Wednesday the firearm seized from the possession of a suspected drug pusher arrested in a buy-bust operation on Monday was owned by a police officer.

This prompted authorities to look into the possibility that the police officer might have been involved in illegal drug activities in the city.

Senior Superintendent Aaron Aquino, deputy regional director for operations (DRDO) of PRO Davao, identified the police as Police Officer 3 Eduardo Tumol, presently detailed at the Regional Police Holding and Accounting Office (RPHAO) in PRO Davao.

The firearm and some P80,000 worth of suspected shabu were seized from the suspect identified as Alex dela Victoria who was arrested by Sasa police.

"May mga batayan tayo sa kapulisan kapag ang baril ay issued ng government at hindi. Pero sa baril na nakuha sa suspect ay may nakaengraved symbol of PNP kay nagpatrace agad kami," Aquino told reporters during the AFP-PNP press conference held Wednesday at The Royal Mandaya Hotel.

Aquino said they are looking on the possible involvement of the police officer in illegal drug activities.

"May mga ibang anggulo din kaming tinitignan. Ngayon pwede ka ng makabili ng illegal drugs kapalit lang ng isang firearm," Aquino said.

But Aquino said that Tumol already underwent a drug test at PRO last Tuesday evening but the results came out negative.

Despite being tested negative, Aquino said the police officer cannot evade from liabilities as they are planning to file administrative charges against him.

"Sabi ni Police Officer 3 Tumol na isinangla niya ang kanyang baril para makuka ng pambayad sa hospital ng kanyang asawa pero sabi naman ng suspect, ibinenta yung baril para sa tuition ng anak. So may mga conflict sa statements nila na kelangan nating imbestigahan," Aquino said.

Charges that will be filed against him are grave misconduct and malversation of government property.

"The maximun sanction kay Tumol ay dismissal from service while ang mininum sanction naman ay demotion," Aquino said.

Tumol, who was previously assigned in Davao Oriental in 2008, was also abducted by members of the New People's Army for almost 45 days.

After he was released, Tumol was assigned since then at the RPHAO.

"Siguro dahil sa trauma kaya hindi na siya nagpaassign ulit sa field," Aquino said. (KRP)

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