Church collector murder: Lapu police in pursuit of three suspected drug addicts
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Lapu-Lapu City Police Office (LLCPO) revealed that they are now looking for three suspected drug users in the slay of 16-year-old Christine Silawan, who was found dead with her face skinned on Monday morning, March 11, 2019.
According to Senior Superintendent Lemuel Obon, the chief of LLCPO, a witness claimed that three persons killed the girl in the empty 2 hectare lot in Barangay Bangkal in Lapu-Lapu City.
Obon said that according to the witness, one of the suspects held down the girl, the other stabbed her, and the third skinned her face.
However, Obon said that nobody heard the girl’s cries even among the surrounding houses, which were at least 300 meters away from the crime scene.
He said that they are leaning on rape as the motive of the killing.
“Kini wala ni gibuhat sa tarong nga tawo. Most likely, drug addicts gyod ni sila kay brutal kaayo nga pagkapatay,” Obon told Cebu Daily News Digital on a phone interview.
Obon said that he is closely monitoring the case since the this kind of killing is a first in the city.
They are now checking the closed-circuit television (CCTV) of the Sacred Heart Parish Church in Barangay Pajac, where the girl was last seen serving as a collector for the 6 p.m. Sunday Mass.
Obon said that the girl was seen eating balut with a fellow church collector in the CCTV before her disappearance.
The secretary of the parish, Rosana Rondina, said that Christine was last seen with an altar boy before going home.
The altar boy told her to wait outside the church as he went to the toilet. When the altar boy came back, Christine was already gone.
Rondina said that the altar boy assumed Christine went home on her own.
Obon said that Christine’s mother told them she was not worried at first because her daughter had a history of sleeping over at her friends’ homes.
But when she heard the news of a girl killed in the area, she went to look for her daughter.
She found out it was her daughter when she went to check on the body at around 9 a.m. at the funeral parlor. She positively identified the girl’s body to the police.
Obon said that the LLCPO needs the help of the community to find the suspects.
“Dapat kita tanan maglagot ani. Dapat kita tanan magtinabangay og pangita aning mga kriminal,” said Obon. (With a report from Paul Lauro) /bmjo
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