ILOILO City – The new director of the Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) vowed to solve three killings involving riding-in-tandem assassins. Preventing similar incidents is his other goal, according to Senior Superintendent Martin Defensor.
Aside from increasing the number of policemen on the streets, there would be more checkpoints with particular focus on those driving motorcycles, said Defensor yesterday.
Unsolved killings could reflect badly on the city’s peace and order situation, he added.
Mayor Jose Espinosa III had issued a statement of concern over the spate of killings while Sangguniang Panlungsod members agreed to summon the ICPO director.
Defensor, who assumed the ICPO directorship yesterday, said the marching order he got from Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao, regional police director, was to focus on stopping the killings.
“They say that you fight fire with fire. So if they will not stop, we have to show them how we work,” said Defensor.
On Sept. 7 at around 9:30 a.m., drug surrenderer Don Azucena was shot by motorcycle-riding gunmen while waiting for a jeepney in Zone 4, Barangay Calumpang, Molo district.
The 42-year-old resident of Barangay North Baluarte, Molo died of multiple gunshot wounds. He voluntarily surrendered to the police in 2016 and completed a drug rehabilitation program.
Several hours after, another drug surrenderer, 41-year-old Rolando Puda Jr., was shot dead in Barangay Ingore, La Paz district also by gunmen on a motorcycle.
Just this Tuesday, Sept. 11, tricycle driver Gerardo Mamarion Jr., a 25-year-old resident of Barangay Tacas, Jaro district, was peppered with bullets around 5 p.m. in Barangay Ungka, Jaro. His father Gerardo Sr. claimed the victim had long stopped using shabu.
“If crimes solutions are ineffective, there is failure or breakdown in our peace and order,” said Councilor Armand Parcon, chairperson of the committee on communication and public information. “This brings anxiety to many of us.”
Defensor also vowed to sustain the campaign against illegal drugs.
At a staff conference after he was sworn in as new city police director, he stressed, too, the importance of discipline and internal cleansing within the city police organization.
The performance of all police precincts would be evaluated, said Defensor, before he decides on a revamp.
Defensor replaced Senior Superintendent Henry Biñas as ICPO director. The turnover of command yesterday was presided by Chief Superintendent Carlito Feliciano, deputy regional director for administration of the Police Regional Office 6 (PRO-6).
Biñas now heads PRO-6’s Regional Personnel and Human Resource Development Division.
A graduate of the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) Batch 1993, Defensor grew up in Janiuay, Iloilo. His early assignments as police officer were mostly in Luzon.
In 2015, Defensor was assigned to the PRO-6 as chief of the Regional Comptroller Division. He also served as an intelligence officer./PN