WHAT IS the latest on the status of the rape-homicide cases filed against four suspects in the heinous crime committed on a lady architect from Calinan, Davao City? The cases were filed against one alias Empoy, the only one in the custody of the law enforcement authorities; on another who is already dead after being meted a “death sentence” by certain shadowy groups; on one who was abducted and is still missing until now; and on a person who remains unidentified and still at large.

In a press conference early last week announcing the identification and the filing of the cases against the suspects, Col. Alberto Lupaz, Davao City Police Office (DCPO) director, admitted that one significant material evidence has not yet been recovered by the Special Investigating Task Group (SITG) working on the crime committed on Vlanche Marie Bragas – the Umbac model tricycle used by the perpetrators.

Have not the police been able to identify the owner of the tricycle? We are certain that the unit’s owner is from Calinan or some nearby barangays. It can clearly be established with the suspects’ identities and their residences. All of them are from Calinan districts. Therefore, the owner is from Calinan. After all, he/she could not have entrusted his vehicle to be driven by someone he/she does not know personally.

And we disagree with the reasoning of some law enforcers that there are so many units of ombac tricycles in Davao City. They should confine their ownership tracking by looking into the records of buyers in motorcycle dealers closest to the Calinan area. After all, there are only a handful of dealers of ombac-type tricycle bodies.

What about the status of another celebrated case of murder (or was it downgraded to homicide?) of a woman who was reported to be engaged in some businesses and doing modeling on the side? The victim, who resided in a subdivision in Mintal, Davao City, was alleged to be a paramour of an Army Brigadier General who was once the head of the Presidential Security Group. He was court-martialed for his administrative infractions. But the latest we heard was only the announcement by the Philippine Army that the court martial proceeding was already underway. As to what happened now, some three weeks after the supposed start of the court martial hearing, the Army has not given or released any update. As to the criminal cases against the alleged mastermind general and his cohorts, well, just like the court-martial proceedings, the criminal cases appear to be slowly “lost in translation.”

We also recall the homicide case filed against a medical doctor working as a non-uniformed employee of the Police Regional Office? The police earlier charged the doctor with murder for shooting to death a young man outside a bar not far from the Central Bank in downtown Davao City. The investigators, both from the police and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), filed a murder case against the doctor. But for some reason, the investigating prosecutor did not find sufficient evidence to affirm the murder charges. Thus the prosecutor downgraded the case to simple homicide.

The relatives of the young victim were reported to have appealed the resolution with the Department of Justice. Until now, we have not heard of any development. We suggest that the family of the slain youth must ask their lawyer to get in touch with the media and give them a lowdown of what has transpired since they made their appeal.

And there’s our personal query about when will the hundreds of garbage bins delivered by the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) to some recipient barangays in rural areas. Until now, these have not been distributed to specific locations where the residents can dispose of their household garbage.

We have been personally making it somewhat our crusade because the bins were purchased with people’s money before the 2019 election and delivered to the barangays in the third and second districts, and even possibly in some remote villages in the first shortly before the onset of the CoViD pandemic. Until now, the garbage bins are still lying idle, piled in some corners of the barangay hall compounds or at the sides of the covered courts.  Some of the bins’ piles are now slowly covered with grasses.

What we cannot understand is why the local government of Davao City purchased the garbage receptacles when in the end, it does not have the means to distribute the same to where these can be put to use according to its purpose. The CENRO just delivered and seemingly forgot about it.

Will anyone of our councilors, especially from the third district ever stand up in the Council and call the CENRO to task?

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Source: Mindanao Times ( https://mindanaotimes.com.ph/2023/06/11/rough-cuts-questions-questions-and-more-questions/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rough-cuts-questions-questions-and-more-questions#utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rough-cuts-questions-questions-and-more-questions)