Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Monday, August 11, 2008

Trader gunned down at Subic checkpoint

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT – A businessman wanted for direct assault on a police officer of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority was shot and killed as he assaulted a senior law enforcement officer who was trying to convince him to submit to questioning.

Initial investigation showed that the suspect, identified as Reyman Reyes, 41, resident of Barangay San Jose, Dinalupihan, Bataan and a livestock dealer, tried to grab a gun as he held and bit the hand of Major Vicente Tolentino, SBMA Law Enforcement Department Operations Chief. The suspect sustained a lone gunshot wound.

SBMA Senior Deputy Administrator for Operations lawyer Ferdinand Hernandez said that based on the investigation report, Reyes had an altercation on Thursday with SBMA Security Officer Michael Magpantay over the entry of his two male friends without gate passes at the Kalayaan Gate, during which the suspect allegedly threatened the officer. The argument stopped only when the Kalayaan resident for whom Reyes works for interceded for him and his guests.

Investigation showed that at around 6:20 a.m. Friday, while Magpantay was just about to go to his sentry post at the Kalayaan Gate, Reyes attacked him with a wooden pole, hitting him in various parts of the body. When Magpantay ran to the sentry, a 17-year-old boy standing there threw a rock at him, hitting him on the head. The boy ran to the Avanza car (ZMA-320) being driven by Reyes and the two suspects drove away from the scene.

An alarm was relayed to the LED Headquarters to alert all sentries and gates about the incident and to track the vehicle. An hour later, Reyes’ car was stopped at the Kalayaan Hill checkpoint but the two suspects refused to come out of the vehicle.

Tolentino, who went to the area to try to convince the suspect to submit to the authorities, ordered the uniformed officers to step back, then asked Reyes to open his window so they could talk. Reyes transferred to the passenger’s seat and opened about a quarter of the window and started shouting at Tolentino and the officers.

Tolentino inserted his arm through the window opening and tried to unlock the door at the passenger side but his arm was grabbed by the boy and Reyes bit his hand.

During the commotion, security officer Juldy Holanda rushed to assist Tolentino and heard someone shouting “Sir, may bakal! May bakal!” – which meant there was a gun. Based on the investigation report, Holanda saw Reyes reaching for something inside the car and cautioned him to stop, which was apparently ignored.

“Convinced that Reyes was pulling a gun, Holanda alleged that he fired a shot at Reyes with his service firearm,” the SBMA Investigation Office reported.

Hernandez said that right after the incident, an ambulance was called to try to save Reyes but the attending doctor declared that the suspect was already dead.

“We called and turned over the case to the Olongapo City Police Office and their team has already conducted an investigation in the area where the incident occurred,” Hernandez said.

During the OCPO investigation, police recovered a bloodstained wooden pole and one Armscor Caliber .45 pistol loaded with nine live bullets – eight in the magazine and one in the chamber – inside the car and one spent shell some two to three meters away from the car. By Bebot Sison Jr. - PhilStar

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