ELEVEN cal. 40 shells and five slugs recovered by the police at the area where AKO Bicol Party-list Rep. Rodel Batocabe and his policeman-bodyguard were shot dead last December 22 matched those fired from the licensed firearm of a former New People’s Army rebel-turned militiaman who confessed to shooting the lawmaker, Philippine National Police chief Director General Oscar Albayalde announced yesterday.
“With the findings of the PNP Crime Laboratory, we are now confident that indeed, Yuson was telling the truth when he said that he shot Rep. Batocabe,” the PNP chief said.
According to PNP Crime Lab director Chief Supt. Rolando Hinanay, the 11 spent cartridges and five slugs found at the scene matched those fired from the licensed cal. 40 pistol of Henry Yuson alias “Romel,” the confessed gunman who was arrested last Friday by the Albay police on the strength of an outstanding warrant of arrest for rape.
Hinanay said that there were two firearms used in the killing of Batocabe and SPO2 Orlando Diaz: A cal. 40 pistol and a cal. .45 pistol based on the evidence found at the scene of the crime. He said they are examining the spent cal. .45 casings and slugs discovered at the scene of the killing, which also wounded seven senior citizens.
PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group director Chief Supt. Amador Corpus said that as of yesterday, they are waiting for the sworn statements of the two remaining suspects being taken in the presence of lawyers prior to their submission to the Albay Prosecutor’s Office.
Both Corpus and Albayalde said that although they have described the case as already solved, it is not still closed since they are investigating all new information being forwarded to them, including why two of the suspects were found to be hiding in Masbate shortly after the killing.
The PNP chief also said that apart from Rolando Arimado alias “RR” and Danilo Muella alias “Manoy Dan” who were both arrested in Masbate province, four other prime suspects identified as Christopher Naval alias “Tuping,” Emmanuel Rosello alias “Boboy,” Yuson and Jaywin Babor alias “Gie” are already under police custody.
A key witness, Emanuel Bonita Judavar, has provided investigators with relevant information regarding the case, from planning to execution stages, the country’s top cop said.
Albayalde said that only Daraga, Albay Mayor Carlwyn Baldo is yet to surrender to the police.
Albayalde said that Rosello and Baboy were also photographed at the scene of the crime before the shooting broke out. He denied CCTV cameras captured the killing, saying there were no CCTV system installed at the crime scene.
“Sa amin, we investigate the act, the killing. Who killed the victims? Who masterminded the case? Kaya nga sabi ko, we are not closing our investigation,” he said.
The PNP chief said that Mayor Baldo has turned out to be not included in the government’s “narco-list” and has no history of violence when he was still the vice mayor.