The peace and order situation is back to normal in Don Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental, as a shootout Wednesday had nothing to do with the elections, Senior Inspector Celjun Nemenio, town police chief, said yesterday.
The shootout claimed the lives of Roland Apellido, a defeated councilor under the ticket of Mayor-elect Jomax Ortiz, and Gotelio Sabay, alias Jack, a former member of the Philippine Army, police records show.
Nemenio said the incident was triggered by drunkeness, and maybe old grudges.
Three other persons, including Alfredo Eden, Isagani Sagno and Julie Toledano, who later surrendered to the police, were injured. Sagno was hit by a stray bullet, while Eden was in the company of Sabay during the shoot-out, police investigations also showed.
Toledano, who was hit in the right leg, admitted his participation in the shootout, Nemenio said. He is now detained at the Don Salvador Benedicto Police Station jail.
A .38 caliber revolver was recovered from Sabay, while 11 empty shells and two deformed slugs of a .45 caliber pistol, as well as five spent shells of .38 caliber revolver were retrieved from the crime scene by the Don Salvador Benedicto police.
Nemenio said a team of 6th Regional Public Safety Battalion was dispatched to Don Salvador Benedicto to augment the local police.
Senior Supt. Ricardo de la Paz, officer-in-charge of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, yesterday called on local political leaders to exhort their supporters to be calm.
The incident was reportedly triggered by a heated argument between Sabay, a supporter of incumbent Mayor Marxlen de la Cruz, and Apellido.*GPB