21 policemen in alleged hazing of rookie cop in Masbate charged

Published August 4, 2022, 5:52 PM

by Niño Luces

LEGAZPI CITY, Albay – The Police Regional Office (PRO)-5 filed criminal charges Thursday, August 4, against 21 policemen involved in the alleged hazing incident that killed Police Patrolman Jaypee de Guzman Ramores last July 26 in Masbate.

Police Major Malu Calubaquib, PRO-5 spokesperson, said that the charges were filed before the Masbate Prosecutor’s Office for violating Republic Act 11053 which amended Republic Act 8049 or the Anti-Hazing Act of 2018 prohibiting hazing and regulating other forms of initiation rites of fraternities, sororities, and other organizations.

“Mas mabigat po ‘yung anti-hazing (Anti-hazing is stiffer). Reclusion perpetua, no bail at may fine ng up to P3 million (and fine of up to P3 million),” Calubaquib said.

Calubaquib said that based on the post-mortem examination conducted by the Ticao District Hospital in San Jacinto, Masbate last July 28, Ramores suffered cardiorespiratory arrest, deep vein thrombosis secondary to pulmonary embolism, and multiple physical injuries secondary to blunt trauma.

He also sustained severe bruises, burns on his chest, wounds on his knees and feet, and other injuries in his body that caused his death on July 26, Calubaquib added.

Calubaquib narrated that two police commissioned officers – a police major and a police captain – and 19 police non-commissioned officers were involved in the alleged hazing incident. Involved personnel were disarmed, relieved from their posts, and were placed under the custody of Regional Mobile Force Battalion 5 (RMFB 5), regional headquarters, inside Camp Gen. Simeon Ola here.

“Aside from the criminal case, the suspects shall also face administrative charges for grave misconduct which will be handled by the Regional Intelligence Affairs Service (RIAS) 5,” Calubaquid said.

Police had earlier reported that the rookie cop collapsed while performing a noontime road run in San Jacinto last July 26 and was brought to the Ticao District Hospital but was released around 5 p.m. the same date.

“PRO 5 also upholds that investigation on the incident will not stop from the filing of cases by the SITG but it shall likewise put great emphasis on ensuring the accessibility of information while the trial is ongoing. Moreover, this unit also encourages other personnel who have experienced the same to speak out and their voices be heard. PRO 5 aims not only to serve justice to the victims but also to end these derogative and offensive initiation rites,” Calubaquib said.