Wed. May 19th, 2021

The police chief of Bato town in Catanduanes was removed from his post on Tuesday over his Facebook post insulting the mother who was killed by a cop in Paniqui, Tarlac on Sunday.

Bato town police chief Capt. Ariel Baruga said in a Facebook post: “Lesson learned kahit puti na ang buhok o ubanin na tayo eh matuto rumispesto sa ating mga Kapulisan, mahirap kalaban ang pagtitimpi at pagpapasensya (even if our hair turns grey, we should learn to respect our police, it’s hard to fight against restraint and tolerance). RIP Nanay and Totoy.”

This angered the police leadership in the Bicol region and Bato Mayor Juan Rodulfo.

“I have directed police provincial director (Col. Brian) Castillo to issue a show-cause order against police Capt. (Ariel) Baruga, the town police officer-in-charge,” said Brig. Gen. Bartolome Bustamante, head of the Philippine National Police office in the Bicol region said.

On Monday, Rodulfo recommended the removal of Baruga.

He asked Castillo to transfer Baruga for his biased statement.

Rodulfo, in his letter, said “We find it very disturbing that Capt. Baruga’s FB post cited that the slain mother was at fault because she did not give due respect to the policeman, prompting him to shoot the victims.”

“Much as we respect his right to publicly pronounce his personal opinion regarding the killings, he should have exercised restraint and prudence in doing so, considering that he is the Chief of Police of this town,” he said.

Rodulfo said Baruga’s loyalty seems to rest primarily on his fellow policemen rather than the oath he took to serve and protect the people.On Sunday, Police Senior Master Sargeant Jonel Nuezca shot dead Sonya Gregorio, 52, and Frank Anthony Gregorio, 25 in Paniqui, Tarlac. The crime was caught in CCTV and the video has gone viral, sparking public outrage. SOVEREIGNPH

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