Driver of car in Cavite shootout surrenders

Published November 9, 2020, 4:22 PM

by Aaron Recuenco 

The driver of the vehicle whose boss killed a police sergeant assigned to the Highway Patrol Group (HPG) in Cavite City is now under the custody of the Philippine National Police (PNP). 

HPG Brig. Gen. Alexander Tagum said that Reymund Zuñiga surrendered to their regional office two days after the Cavite City shootout wherein his boss Methusael Cebrian and Police Chief Master Sgt. Julius Ancalas were killed.

Tagum said Zuñiga was positively identified as the driver of the Nissan Tierra which was intercepted by the HPG operatives at Manila-Cavite Road on Friday as it had no license plate and conduction sticker.

In a viral video of what transpired before the shooting incident, an HPG officer was seen politely explaining to Cebrian why the vehicle was flagged down and his possible violations.

“Probably, he was forced to engage in violent actions after our personnel told him that the vehicle could be impounded. Maybe he was hiding something, that is why he could did not cooperate when he was asked to show the car documents,” said Tagum.

Cebrian killed Ancalas when he went into a shooting rampage using a Bushmaster. Cebrian reportedly emptied a magazine while shooting to the police patrol car where the HPG personnel were hiding. He himself was killed during the shooutout.

Tagum said that when Cebrian alighted the vehicle and started firing the gun, Zuñiga sped off the vehicle and abandoned it later in Noveleta town.

“What he did was irrational. Our men politely asked and explain to him why he was flagged down yet, he resorted to violence,” said Tagum.

Cebrian was a husband of an officer of the Philippine Navy assigned at Sangley Point. Based on background check, he had a history of road rage back in 2016 when he threatened fellow motorists with a gun.

Cebrian was also a cadet of the Philippine Military Academy but left due to academic ineligibility. He was a businessman.

Zuñiga told the police that when he was about to give his license, Cebrian prevented him and even ordered him to close the car window at the driver’s side. It was then that the HPG personnel went back to the patrol car and took a defensive position.

But Cebrian reportedly used bullets that could pierce through metals, the reason why Ancalas was killed although he positioned himself at the back of the patrol car.

Tagum said the Nissan Tierra turned out to be in the list of hot cars, the reason why Cebrian could not produce a document to prove his ownership.

He said that when the driver presented a conduction sticker during the surrender, it belonged to another vehicle and not the Nissan Tierra.

“Based on our checking, the Bushmaster that Cebrian used was not licensed,” said Tagum.