- Suspect who mowed down people might be drunk or mentally challenged: police
A MAN and a woman were killed when a civilian commandeered a Task Force Davao KM450 truck before mowing down people buying Noche Buena dinner from fruits and vegetable vendors along A. Pichon Street (formerly Magallanes) around 5:30 a.m. on Christmas Eve.
The police, however, clarified that the incident was not a terroristic act.
Major Marvin Hugos, commander of San Pedro Police Station, identified the victims as Jamie Lopez Cole, 63, male, and a resident of Km. 10, Buhangin, and Rocel Luna Haspe, 34, of Spring Village, Ma-a, who both died on the spot.
The injured victims were Teresita Pilapil Tangaro, 45, a resident of Piapi Boulevard; Michael Baldoman Maghuyop, 44, a resident of Birhen sa Lourdes, Barangay Mandug; and Mae Antoneth P. Anticamara, 20, a resident of Purok 11, Sto. Nino, Bucana, Barangay 76-A. They were all waiting for a passenger jeepney at the time of the incident.
Police identified the suspect as Crenenandy Rodriguez Cadiente, 44, a resident of Purok 12, St. John, Bucana.
According to the report, Private First Class Patrick Saguin Trumata, the driver of the KM450 truck with number plate SJE-281, alighted and left the engine idling along Pichon Street to supposedly double-check if all the soldiers in the truck already disembarked.
The suspect slipped inside without anybody noticing and cut through people and parked motorcycles and four-wheeled vehicles before it stopped after ramming a closed van.
In a phone interview on Sunday, Hugos said they haven’t fully interviewed the suspect yet because he was acting unhinged.
“Di pa mi musulti nga duna sya deperensya (We could not yet ascertain if he is mentally challenged or drunk),” he said.
The officer said the truck driver had a companion, a fellow soldier who also left the truck.
“Possibly didto nalingaw tan aw sa palibot wala magdahom (He could have been distracted and didn’t expect the incident to occur),” he added.
Nevertheless, Hugos said they would check any CCTV footage to shed light into what really happened.
Hugos said they would subject the suspect to a psychological assessment before filing a case for reckless imprudence resulting in homicide and damage to properties.
The police officer also did not discount filing criminal and administrative liability against the soldiers who left the truck unattended. He also reminded the public to avoid leaving their vehicles running if they must go on an errand to prevent a repeat of the incident.
The injured pedestrians were rushed to the Southern Philippines Medical Center while the bodies of the victims are now in the Angel Funeral Homes along F. Torres Street.
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