The fraternity of a lawyer, who reportedly shot a Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) judge before allegedly killing himself, has joined calls to take down graphic photos and videos of the incident.
In a statement released on Thursday, the Fraternal Order of Leviathan of the San Sebastian College Recoletos-College of Law urged the public to do so “out of respect for the families and friends of” Manila RTC Branch 45 Judge Ma. Theresa Abadilla and lawyer Amado Rebato.
“We make this humble plea for sobriety amidst the deluge of speculations and indignation,” read the statement in part.
“Photos and videos showing but a piece of what had transpired have been circulating in social media and the news, and many have given their opinions and have speculated on what may have led to this tragedy. Yet, it is at this very moment that we all should allow prudence and our better judgment to guide us all in getting to the truth,” it added.
Earlier, lawyer Susan Villanueva, a professor from the University of the Philippines, appealed to Filipinos online to “be sensitive and do the right thing” by deleting their posts with photos and videos of the shooting incident or by reporting such posts to help take them down.
The fraternity also mourned the passing of the two members of the bar, particularly its member Rebato.
“Atty. Amador Rebato Jr. or Brod Jun as was fondly called by us, was a true, caring, and loyal friend. He has been in public service for several years and has spent most of those in the judiciary. He was dependable and dedicated in his life’s pursuits, and will be greatly missed,” it said.
Abadilla and Rebato, the branch clerk of court, were reportedly talking inside the judge’s chamber on the fifth floor of the Manila City Hall last Wednesday when the clerk allegedly shot her pointblank in the head before reportedly shooting himself with a 9mm pistol.
Rebato died on the spot while the judge died a few minutes after arrival at a hospital.