Eleazar dismisses cop behind death of teen with autism in Valenzuela anti-tupada operation

Published October 12, 2021, 2:33 PM

by Aaron Recuenco 

Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), has approved the dismissal from the service of the police sergeant who arrested but accidentally killed an 18-year old with special needs during an anti-illegal gambling operation in Valenzuela City in May this year.

In approving the dismissal of Police Senior Master Sgt. Christopher Salcedo, Eleazar said the reason was the glaring violations of the Police Operational Procedures based on the review of the case.

“I have taken into consideration several factors that aggravated his offense including violation of the Police Operational Procedure as well as the fact that the teenager was a person with special needs,” said Eleazar.

First, Eleazar explained that Edwin Arnigo was not in the main area where the tupada (illegal cockfighting) was held and as such, he was not supposed to be arrested.

And second, the fact that Arnigo was suffering from autism spectrum disorder means that he could have not participated in the illegal cockfighting operation.

Salcedo was administratively charged for the death of Arnigo in an anti-illegal gambling operation conducted by Valenzuela City Police personnel last May 23. The NBI is still conducting a probe for the filing of a criminal complaint against Salcedo.

The report of the Valenzuela City police said that Sacedo accidentally fired his gun which resulted in the death of Arnigo. Witnesses said Arnigo was not in the main area where the tupada was held but was still arrested by the policeman.

Eleazar also affirmed the dropping of the administrative cases of grave neglect of duty and less grave neglect of duty against four other Valenzuela City police personnel who took part in the anti-illegal gambling operation.

He said that there was no substantive evidence to support their supposed administrative offenses of grave neglect of duty and less grave neglect of duty.

Previously the IAS recommended a 40-day suspension against Salcedo citing the accidental nature of the fatal shooting and his awards and citations as mitigating factors.