Alleged victim of a summary execution found dead in Negros city

BACOLOD CITY - A dead man believed to be a victim of a summary execution was found at the roadside in Barangay Aguisan, Himamaylan City, Negros Occidental on Sunday.

Capt. Romulo Gepilango, deputy police chief of Himamaylan City Police Station, identified the victim as Levy Ortega, 46, of Barangay Estefania here.

Ortega was found with multiple gunshot wounds in the head, according to Gepilango.

The victim's eyes were covered with masking tape, while his head was covered with a bonnet and wrapped with packaging tape. His hands and feet were also tied with packaging tape.

A placard was also found beside the victim mentioning three names with a threat, including a candidate in the fifth district, who was a former barangay captain.

Gepilango said they believed that the victim was killed there, since two fired bullets of .45 caliber pistol, and a fired cartridge case of 5.56mm firearm were recovered from the crime scene.

When asked about the names on the placard, Gepilango said that per investigation, the candidate did not know the victim, and only knew one of the names mentioned.

Prior to the killing, Ortega was reportedly abducted from his house late Saturday night, based on the information provided by his 14-year-old child, who was allegedly threatened by unidentified armed men who stormed their house.

According to Maj. Ritchie Gohee, head of Police Station 4, five unidentified men stormed the victim’s house and searched for an “item” from the victim, while five others were outside their house on board a van, a pick-up truck, a sports utility vehicle, and a motorcycle.

When the armed men failed to see or get the item they were looking for, they allegedly forced the victim to ride the van, Gohee said, citing the statement of the victim’s child.

Gohee said that based on the information from barangay, the victim was allegedly engaging in the illegal drug trade, but he was not under the watchlist of the police.

Still, the police said they have no idea yet on the possible motive in the absence of witnesses in the area.