Gun-for-hire nabbed for shooting bus conductor in Cebu City, hunt for main culprit continues

By: Emmariel Ares - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | November 03,2023 - 05:04 PM

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CEBU CITY, Philippines – A gun-for-hire was arrested by police for being one of two alleged suspects in the shooting to death of a bus conductor in front of a garage in Barangay Mambaling, Cebu City on Wednesday evening, November 1, 2023.

Personnel of the Mambaling Police Station nabbed the alleged suspect during a hot-pursuit operation in Barangay Duljo Fatima early Thursday morning after he was spotted carrying firearms. 

The arrested suspect was described by police as a gun-for-hire who is also accused of being involved in another shooting incident in the barangay the motive of which was said to be illegal drugs. 

READ: Gun-for-hire group members nabbed in Bohol, P300K shabu seized

Police Major Jonathan Bethooven Nifiel Taneo, chief of Mambaling Police Station, told CDN Digital in a phone interview that the gun-for-hire was allegedly employed by the mastermind to kill the bus conductor.

The alleged suspect is now detained at the Mambaling Police Station pending the filing of appropriate charges.

According to the police report, a concerned citizen alarmed them about the shooting incident along C. Padilla Street at around 8:45 p.m.

Immediately after, responding officers found the bloodied victim lying on the ground. 

The victim was identified as 36-year-old James Kenneth Sanchez, a conductor of a bus company and a resident of Barangay Caceres in Oslob, Cebu.

Taneo disclosed that at the time of the incident, the victim had just finished eating with a bus driver and was heading inside the garage at the end of their shift.

The victim allegedly remained outside after telling the bus driver to go ahead first because he was waiting for someone.

A few minutes later, the driver allegedly heard a gunshot and saw the victim trying to run inside the garage.

However, Sanchez collapsed on the ground before he could make it inside. 

The bus driver told police that he saw a second assailant approach the victim who was on the ground and shoot him once in the head. After seeing that Sanchez was no longer moving, the two assailants immediately escaped on foot.

Taneo said that the arrested gun-for-hire fired the first shot that hit Sanchez on the body while the second assailant was the one who finished the victim off with a bullet to the head causing his instantaneous death.

READ: ‘Member’ of killers-for-hire group killed in Brgy San Roque, Cebu City

Personnel from the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CCDRRMO)  assessed the victim at the scene and declared him dead on the spot after detecting no pulse or sign of life. 

Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) recovered two empty cartridge shells and one slug of an unknown caliber firearm believed to come from the gun-for-hire and the main suspect. 

According to Taneo, they are looking into personal grudge as a motive because the victim reportedly had a fight with a co-worker before the shooting.

He said that the victim had an argument with another conductor which led to a fistfight that resulted in the latter being beaten.

Taneo said that they are looking for the co-worker who is now considered a suspect.

The gun-for-hire is now under police custody.


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TAGS: bus conductor, Gun-for-hire, Mabaling, shooting

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