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Suspects alive; cop still stands to receive P20K

By: Apple Ta-as, Chito O. Aragon, Jhunnex Napallacan May 18,2016 - 11:44 PM


Cebu City Mayor-elect Tomas Osmeña (center) meets with police officials in his residence to discuss plans to improve the peace and order situation. On his Facebook page, Osmeña wrote: “Let’s make Cebu City safe again.” (SOURCE: TOMAS R. OSMEÑA FB PAGE)

Cebu City Mayor-elect Tomas Osmeña (center) meets with police officials in his residence to discuss plans to improve the peace and order situation. On his Facebook page, Osmeña wrote: “Let’s make Cebu City safe again.” (SOURCE: TOMAS R. OSMEÑA FB PAGE)

Police yesterday clarified that both suspects wounded in a shooting incident just outside the Cebu Business Park on Tuesday are alive.

Because no one died, there would be no P50,000 cash reward for PO3 Julius Regis, the off-duty policeman who responded to the jeepney robbery alarm that led to the shooting.

When told that the suspect who was reported to have died had survived, Cebu City Mayor-elect Tomas Osmeña said, “Ilang gi-revive, pastilan!”

Osmeña will still give Regis a total of P20,000, or P10,000 for each of the wounded suspect. Osmeña also congratulated Regis, saying it was a job well done.

“He (Regis) was off-duty. Atong tagaan og konsiderasyon, di ba? Atong tagaan siya og tag-dies mil, bale P20 mil (Let us give consideration. We will give him P10,000 for each suspect, or P20,000),” Osmeña said.

Supt. Michael Bastes, chief of the City Intelligence Branch (CIB) of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO), said suspect Arman de la Peña (not de la Cruz as earlier reported) was not pronounced dead on arrival, contrary to previous reports.

Both de la Peña and Nestor Benavente have been placed on hospital arrest, Bastes said.

De la Peña, who sustained gunshot wounds on his neck and back, has reportedly been moved to a recovery room at the privately run Perpetual Succor Hospital while Benavente, who was also shot in the back, was recuperating at the government-owned Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC).


Bastes said that based on their interrogation of Benavente, the suspects hailed from Barangay Cogon, Ozamiz City, Misamis Occidental.

The third suspect, who drove the motorcycle they used as getaway vehicle after the jeepney robbery, was identified as John. Benavente claimed they met John in Cebu, but John hailed from Tangub City, still in Misamis Occidental.

“We already talked with our counterparts in Mindanao and we were able to verify their names,” Bastes told reporters.

“The two suspects identified were allegedly responsible for a pawnshop heist in Surigao while Benavente was arrested in Manila before for illegal possession of firearm,” Bastes added.

Benavente, 38, was allegedly arrested along with Ricky Cadavero alias Cambal, who was killed in a police encounter in Manila.

Bastes said Benavente claimed that they had planned to return to Ozamis, but De la Peña allegedly wanted to carry out the robbery, “probably to buy food or illegal drugs.”

“Benavente told me that he did not want to rob but de la Peña insisted in doing so in broad daylight,” said Bastes.


Senior Supt. Clifford Gairanod, provincial director of Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO), said they were coordinating with the CCPO in looking into the possible involvement of the two suspects with hired goons of politicians during the recently concluded elections.

Bastes said all units have been alerted because the suspected hired goons may be planning to carry out heists after the elections.

De la Peña and Benavente allegedly robbed Cristita Bernil Barbosa, 65, on board a 04C jeepney along Gorordo Ave., Cebu City shortly before noon on Tuesday. John, the motorcycle driver, stood by the jeepney’s entrance to block the escape of the passengers.

Regis, who was driving his motorcycle towards his residence in Barangay Camputhaw, noticed the commotion inside the jeepney and chased the three suspects as they fled on their motorcycle.

The chase ended in a shooting incident along Archbishop Reyes Ave., with de la Peña falling off the motorcycle. Benavente boarded a 13C jeepney, but was later apprehended in Banilad. John remained at large as of yesterday.

Osmeña had offered a P50,000 cash reward to anybody — police, tanod or civilian — who can kill criminal elements in a legal manner. If the suspected criminal is merely wounded, the incentive is only P5,000.

In the case of Regis, who was off-duty but still responded to the crime, Osmeña doubled the P5,000 incentive for every arrest to P10,000.

Police recovered a .45 caliber pistol and a 9mm pistol allegedly owned by Benavente and de la Peña.

“We will conduct a ballistic examination and compare the results to the Carcar robbery as one of the members has the same physical features with one of the armed men who robbed the mall last month,” said Bastes.

Meanwhile, Osmeña had an initial discussion with some police officials on his plan to revive Oplan Pagsandurot and set up emergency response 911.

Chief Insp. David Señor, chief of CPPO operations, said Osmeña also stressed the need for quick response to alarms.

Under Oplan Pagsandurot, a police officer would be asked to render services for a number of hours in his barangay.

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TAGS: Cebu, Cebu City, police, reward, robber, robbery, shoot, Tomas Osmeña

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