CCPO exec notes drop in crimes in Cebu City in 2021
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Reported crimes in Cebu City were fewer in 2021, the second year of the pandemic, as compared to 2020 , when the pandemic started.
This despite the easing of restrictions of preventing COVID-19 from spreading, said Police Lieutenant Colonel Wilbert Parilla, Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) deputy director for operations in a recent press briefing.
Parilla said that there were only 883 crimes reported as based on their crime data for 2021 as compared to 1,073 crimes reported in 2020.
He attributed this to their achieving a heightened police visibility, which was made possible and more effective with the 700 police personnel sent to augment the Cebu City Police Office last August 15, 2021.
This resulted to more police presence in interior areas of the barangays in the city.
Aside from increased police presence, the force multipliers and peace security officers, were also tapped to help secure the barangays in the city.
Parilla said these force multipliers also helped contribute to the drop in crimes in the city in 2021.
He said in an interview that they had recorded a drop in crime incidents in Cebu City mainly on index crimes, which included murder, homicide, physical injuries, rape, robbery, theft, and carnapping both with motor vehicles and motorcycles.
With mobility restricted in Cebu City in 2020, the city policemen recorded 1073 crime incidents, which included 96 murder cases, 4 homicide cases, 248 physical injury incidents, 86 for rape, 111 for robbery, 500 for theft, two for motor vehicle carnapping, and 26 for motorcycles from January 1 to December 12, 2020.
In 2021, Parilla said that there were 190 crimes fewer than 2020 or a drop from 1073 in 2020 to 883 crimes in 2021.
He said that the crimes in 2021 included 78 murder cases, 5 homicide cases, 165 physical injury cases, 87 robbery incidents, 479 theft incidents, 2 motor vehicle carnapping and 27 motorcycle carnapping.
Aside from that, Parilla also noted a big drop in rape cases in 2021 — from 86 cases in 2020 to 40 cases in 2021.
Parilla said that most of the victims in these reported rape cases were minors.
He could not give the specific reasons for the drop in the rape cases because of the sensitivity of the issue, but he attributed their information dissemination and intensified community involvement as contributing factors to this development.
He said that the victims now had the means to report any attempt and act of abuse done by perpetrators even if the latter were relatives.
More importantly, he said, they (the public) were more informed on what to do and not to do in this kind of situation.
Parilla also said they were also working on solving the cases and bring perpetrators of crimes to justice.
However, he could not yet provide the exact Crime Clearance Efficiency (CCE) and Crime Solution Efficiency (CSE).
In 2021 there were 78 murder cases as compared to 96 murder cases in 2020.
Parilla, however, noted that three known personalities in the city were gunned down in a matter of four months in 2021 in Cebu City.
He was referring to radio blocktimer Rey Cortes, Lawyer Rex Fernandez, and former fraternity leader Richard Buscaino.
Cortes was gunned down on July 22, 2021, as he was leaving the radio station in Barangay Mambaling, where he worked.
Fernandez was shot dead by an unidentified lone gunman who waited in ambush at a street corner in Barangay Guadalupe, Cebu City for the lawyer’s car to pass by last August 26, 2021.
Buscaino was shot by a motorcycle-riding gunman as the victim was cruising along a road near his funeral parlor business in Barangay Calamba.
The CCPO deputy director for operations said that with no major developments in the cases of Cortes and Fernandez, he believed that these two cases would more likely be considered “cold cases” and would be turned over to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), the unit who were in charge of handling these kinds of cases.
Parilla said that a case would be considered a cold case if after 6 months of investigation of the respective police office involved would make no major developments — such as no breakthroughs in the investigation on the identity of the killer or killers which would lead to the case being solved.
In Buscaino’s case, however, Parilla said that they had already identified the killer but they were still waiting for the wife and family of the victim to return to Cebu City.
The CCPO official also said that they were planning to consult the legal office of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas on the possibility of Police Colonel Josefino Ligan, Cebu City Police Office director, to be the complainant of the case instead against the killer if the family would not return to Cebu City and file the case.
He also assured that they had been monitoring the gunman and that he was still in the city.
For this year, 2022, Parilla said he hoped that they would still effective implement security measures to cut the number of crime incidents in Cebu City further.
He said they would continue with their increased police visibility and implement more community empowerment programs so that the community could help them prevent more crimes from happening in the city.
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