High police morale results in more anti-crime operations
THE recent strong anti-crime pronouncements of incoming President Rodrigo Duterte and Cebu City Mayor-elect Tomas Osmeña capped with Osmeña’s generous offer to reward those who can shoot dead criminals “in a legal way” has evidently served as a great morale booster to members of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) who see a president and a mayor who have their back covered in the war against crime.
CCPO officials said that with or without rewards, policemen aspire to do their jobs better.
Police Regional Office Director Chief Supt. Patrocinio Comendador sent directives to his men to step up their campaign against top wanted criminals already recorded in the watchlist of every police station.
“I call for police officers that they should go for famous names and high value targets with high returns,” he said.
CCPO director Senior Supt. Benjamin Santos Jr. told CDN that they are now intensifying the campaign against illegal drugs by adding two teams to
CCPO’s anti-illegal drugs unit which resulted to more police operations and arrests.
“In any operation, I still and will always tell my people to respect human rights; however, if suspects have firearms and their life is at risk, then it is a different thing,” said Santos.
Early yesterday morning, a buy-bust operation by operatives of the City Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Task Force (CAIDSOTF) in Barangay Sudlon Dos, Cebu City resulted to the death of a suspected drug pusher identified as Teodoro “Doroy” Cabriana.
According to Senior Insp. Eunil Avergonzado, chief of CAIDSOTF, the suspect engaged policemen in a shootout which led to Cabriana’s death from multiple gunshot wounds. Cabriana was rushed to the Cebu City Medical Center but failed to make it to the hospital alive, Avergonzado said.
Police said that P1.2 million worth of illegal drugs and a .45 pistol were recovered from Cabriana.
According to Avergonzado, his operative who pretended to be a buyer was able to buy shabu from Cabriana outside his house.
When Cabriana noticed policemen approaching, he allegedly ran towards his residence and got a gun. Pursuing policemen said Cabriana shot at them but missed so they returned fire.
Meanwhile, Santos said that Cabriana was the “right hand” of a big time drug lord operating in the region identified as Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz.
“Cabriana has been known as someone who will surely fight it out with the police. He is a big catch as he is a right hand to Jaguar, a man wanted for years because of illegal drugs,” said Santos.
Avergonzado also said they learned of Cabriana’s activities from a complaint by parents of pupils from a school near the suspect’s residence.
“Ang mga ginikanan maoy nireklamo kay duol ra sa eskwelahan. Apil na mireklamo ang mga barangay officials (It was the parents who complained because his drug activities were done near the school. The barangay officials also complained),” Avergonzado added.
Meanwhile, Comenadador said that the incident should serve as “fair warning” to small time and big time drug pushers as police will definitely go after them.
But in a GMA Cebu interview yesterday, the suspect’s wife Joenila denied that her husband was a drug pusher, adding that he was only a drug user and did not own the bulk of illegal drugs recovered by police.
Comendador said he will look into the allegations although the widow’s reaction is considered “natural” from relatives of suspected drug pushers.
“But we saw drugs around P1 million, that should be a clear proof…That is an indisputable presumption of law that police are only doing their job in regular fashion. And if there are other evidences to point out otherwise, there will be action,” Comendador said.
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