The Philippine National Police (PNP) is eyeing to commission a study on anger management that may be used to come up with a training course plan for all policemen.
PNP chief Gen. Debold Sinas said that he had already consulted with experts from the PNP Health Service as to why Senior Master Sgt. Jonel Nuezca snapped and shot his two neighbors in Paniqui, Tarlac in the head at close range.
“We might also have a new study on anger management of our people. I want to come up with a study and how it (the result of the study) could be converted to a module for anger management,” said Sinas.
Sinas said that based on the initial discussion with PNP neuropsychiatrists, he was told that what happened in Paniqui was a case of mishandling a confrontation due to a sudden burst of anger.
“If you would notice, he decided to surrender. He did not run away and hide. He chose character probably after his anger subsided so that already shows that he is ready to face the charges. And he could not deny it because the incident was documented” said Sinas.
Sinas was referring to the video of the killing that went viral in social media.
Nuezca has also been implicated in two separate cases of homicide last year, both of them were dismissed due to lack of substantial pieces of evidence to pin him down at least on the administrative cases filed against him.
He also faced a case of non-appearance in court against a drug suspect and another case for refusal to have himself subjected to a surprise drug test.
Brig. Gen. Valeriano de Leon, director of the Central Luzon regional police, said two counts of murder were already slapped against Nuezca and the Prosecutor’s Office recommended no bail for the cases.
The case of Nuezca was not the first time that a police officer snapped in handling confrontation with civilians.
In October 2016, a policeman assigned at the Manila Police District was accused of repeatedly running over a group of rallyists near the US Embassy in Manila after the protesters allegedly tried to flip over a police car.
In March this year, an irate police official assigned also at the MPD was investigated after he was accused of beating up quarantine violators.
While there were cases of alleged abuses that were posted and went viral in the social media, cases of policemen having difficulty controlling their anger have been a problem in the past since these results to violation of police procedures—and eventually dragged the police into controversy.
Before civilians are allowed to own a gun, there is a rigorous process that they have to go through in order to ensure that they are mentally fit to carry firearms. In fact, one of the requirements is a neuropsychiatric test.
Owning and carrying a gun, security experts said, is more of a privilege than a right of a citizen, at least in the Philippines.
The PNP, on the other hand, is one of a handful of government agencies allowed by the law to carry guns as part of its law enforcement function.
But in order to ensure that the privilege of carrying firearms is not abused, there are internal rules and policies that have to be followed by PNP members such as the Police Operational Procedures of the PNP in dealing with both armed and unarmed civilians or enemies.
Among the courses that policemen have to go through before they enter the police service and even during their stay in PNP as refresher courses are marksmanship training to ensure that they would hit the right target and eventually minimize collateral damage, seminar on human rights and even the Police Operational Procedures that include the Rules of Engagement.