By: Glazyl Y. Masculino
BACOLOD City – A 19-year-old boy who was allegedly abducted in E.B. Magalona town in Negros Occidental Monday night, was found dead in the neighboring city of Victorias the following day.
Police Captain Wilfredo Benoman Jr., town police chief, identified the fatality as Roger Hellacone, of Barangay Sto. Niño, a construction worker and farm worker.
The abduction happened when three unidentified men who were wearing face masks entered a computer shop at Barangay Tanza around 7:55 p.m. Monday and forced Hellacone on board a silver gray Strada pick-up truck. His sister later reported the incident to the police.
On Wednesday morning, Hellacone was found dead in the middle of the sugarcane field at Hacienda Newton, Barangay 13, Victorias City.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Eduardo Corpuz, city police chief, said the victim’s identity was confirmed by his elder sister who went to the area after receiving a call from the authorities about her missing brother.
Corpuz said the victim’s hands were hogtied and he suffered two gunshot wounds on his forehead and neck when found by some residents past 9 a.m. Tuesday.
Corpuz also said that the victim had bruises on his face, an indication that he was probably tortured before he was shot to death.
Police recovered from the scene a fired cartridge case of .45 caliber ammunition.
Corpuz said some residents heard two gun shots but failed to see the assailants because the area is far from houses and is considered to be isolated. Police have no lead yet on the identities of the perpetrators.
Meanwhile, Benoman said they are looking into drug-related issue as possible motive behind the killing.
Based on their investigation, the victim was an alleged courier of a drug group in Manapla town operated by alleged drug lord Mark Samson Aguirre alias “Alson Aguirre”, who was killed in a drug bust in the said town in March 2019.
Benoman said Hellacone never operated in E.B. Magalona town and was not even included in their drugs watch list as he usually stayed in Manapla town.
Benoman said the victim went to Manila for two months after he allegedly committed an offense involving money in the province. He came home December last year.
Though there could be other possible angles behind the murder case, Benoman said that they are closely investigating if the killing was triggered by the victim’s alleged link to illegal drugs.