By Jennifer P. Rendon
Just five days into the murder of a tricycle driver, another driver was killed in Iloilo City evening of May 28, 2020.
And just like the previous incident, Hernani Tipanan Jr., 33, of Barangay Fajardo, Jaro, Iloilo City, was also gunned down by “riding-in-tandem” suspects.
Police Major Marlon Valencia, Mandurriao police chief, said it was not clear if the victim was mobile or was waiting for passengers when the incident happened.
“We don’t have any eyewitnesses. When our responding policemen arrived, he was slumped with his head on the steering wheel,” he said.
While some reports indicated that it was a case of murder perpetrated by motorcycle-riding suspect/s, “we have yet to ascertain how many suspects took part in the killing,” Valencia said.
Policemen took the victim to the nearby Western Visayas Medical Center where he died 45 minutes later due to gunshot injuries on his head and body.
Recovered from the crime scene were two ammunition cartridges.
‘ILLEGAL DRUG PERSONALITY’
Valencia confirmed that Tipanan was an illegal drug personality who was subjected to Oplan Tokhang in 2016.
In fact, members of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency 6 (PDEA6) arrested him in an anti-narcotics operation on Nov. 15, 2017 at Barangay Seminario, Jaro. He was jailed for more than a year.
On top of that, Valencia said the suspect was also tagged in theft incidents.
On May 23, another tricycle driver was also killed by motorcycle-riding suspects in Jaro district.
The death of 44-year old Ricky Jinon remains unsolved as of this writing.
Jinon was killed more than two months since the last killing perpetrated by MRS was recorded.
Jinon, a resident of Barangay San Isidro, Jaro, was reportedly driving his tricycle when two men flagged him down in Zone 4, Barangay Balabago and shot him.
Police investigators are considering at least three motives behind Jinon’s killing.
The Jaro police chief confirmed that the victim was on the watchlist of illegal drug personalities being an alleged member of the Prevendido-Gregori Group.
But the victim’s family said he may have been killed for another reason.
Riding-in-tandem killers in Iloilo City also hit an alleged civilian agent of a law-enforcement agency.
Angel Lademora, 50, of Barangay Camiri, San Enrique, Iloilo, was walking from his daughter’s boarding house at Barangay Democarcia, Jaro district, when he was shot on March 5, 2020.