3 Angeles City cops relieved for shooting of Muslim boy
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO – The two police officers involved in the shooting of a Muslim boy in Angeles City were relieved from their posts along with their station chief. Police Regional Office (PRO)-Central Luzon director Amador Corpus confirmed to SunStar Pampanga that he ordered the temporary relief of Police Officer 1 (PO1) Aizel Dean Marie Lopez and PO1 Osmond Rivera. Lopez and Rivera are under investigation following their alleged shooting of 16-year-old Salman Pundato Macal in Barangay Balibago in Angeles City recently. “I ordered the city director of Angeles City to temporarily relieve the involved policemen while the investigation is ongoing,” Corpus said.
He added that Senior Inspector Dange Cabungkal, Police Station 4 chief, was also relieved from his post due to “command responsibility.”
The three policemen are now in “floating status,” Corpus said. Meanwhile, Macal is now in stable condition and is still confined at the Jose B. Lingad Regional Memorial Hospital. The victim’s mom, Kayasama, however, fears that her son would be paralyzed since the 9mm bullet that hit him damaged his spinal cord. PO1s Lopez and Rivera claimed in the police report that the incident was an “armed encounter.” They alleged that Macal first pointed his gun at them, but the victim’s mother refuted saying his son never owned a gun. The boy was reportedly test-driving a motorcycle near their house when he was blocked by a police mobile patrol car. After Macal supposedly hit the patrol car, the two police officers alighted from the car and the two parties engaged in a discussion. According to Lopez and Rivera, Macal tried to shot them when they were about to approach him.
The victim, whose gun failed to went off, was shot by PO1 Lopez as seen in the CCTV footage released to media. It was also stated in the police report that they were on patrol when they saw the victim onboard a motorcycle and his companion on another motorbike. “Upon seeing the mobile patrol, the duo riders started their motorcycles’ engines and sped off hurriedly,” they stated, adding they chased them and were able to catch up with the teenager while his companion was able to get away. The victim’s mother refuted the police officers’ statement. Kayasama said she was in her store looking at his son when the two police officers were talking to him. “Nu’ng makita ko ’yung anak ko na nabaril ng pulis, bigla akong tumakbo. Nakita ko na may tama ang anak ko. Sabi ko, bakit ninyo binaril ang anak ko wala namang kasalanan? Sabi nu’ng pulis, humihingi po ako ng dispensa, disgrasya lang ang nangyari, sabi ng pulis,” Kayasama said in a statement. She belied the police officers’ statement that her son was carrying a gun, saying Salman never owned one. “Wala pong dalang baril ang anak ko. Wala po siyang dala kahit na ano mula pa nu’ng nakabulagta siya, hanggang isakay siya sa mobile at hanggang sa ospital, wala po siyang dala,” she said. She added that their family is set to file a case against the two police officers.