By Jennifer P. Rendon
Two murder incidents rocked Iloilo City on Jan. 19, 2020, a week before the highly touted Dinagyang Festival culminates.
The two broad daylight murders happened 30 minutes apart on Sunday.
The first incident happened 12 p.m. at Locsin Street in Barangay Cuartero, Jaro district.
Gunmen sprayed bullets at Allen Muller, 42, also a resident of Cuartero village. The victim suffered 28 gunshot wounds on different parts of his body.
Police Captain Eduardo Siacon, Jaro police chief, said the number of wounds might be due to the fact that some of the bullets went through Muller’s body.
Muller was taken to West Visayas State University Medical Center where he was declared dead on arrival.
Based on CCTV footage, the first gunman alighted from the passenger seat behind the driver of a Mitsubishi Adventure AUV.
Another gunman alighted from the other side and went to the front of the vehicle. The two assailants repeatedly shot the victim.
Recovered from the crime were five empty shells of caliber .45 ammunition, nine shells of caliber .9mm ammos, and nine slugs.
Thirty minutes later, Delfin Britanico, 36, a resident of Mirasol Subdivision on Dicen Street, La Paz, was shot dead at Barangay Nabitasan, La Paz.
Police reports indicated that “Britanico was shot by unidentified person/s in different parts of his body by unknown type of firearm.”
He was taken to Medicus Medical Center where he died.
Ten empty shells of caliber .45 ammos were recovered from the crime scene.
Police Colonel Martin Defensor Jr. believed that the twin shooting incidents were unrelated. He claimed they have yet to profile Muller, although there were previous reports linking the victim to illegal drugs.
Muller, a call center agent, was the brother of Mark Muller, who was also killed by riding-in-tandem gunmen on Aug. 16, 2019 at Barangay Taft North, Mandurriao district.
Mark, 38, a caller center agent residing at Cuartero village, Jaro, was repeatedly shot by the still unknown assailants.
He was listed by the Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council (BADAC) as an alleged drug user.
While he surrendered through Oplan Tokhang, he did not undergo the community-based drug rehabilitation program.
But village officials noted that Muller had no record of any wrong doing in the barangay.
Both Muller brothers were listed by the Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council (BADAC). Mark surrendered in 2016, followed by Allen.
But Siacon said the two did not undergo the community-based drug rehabilitation program.
Britanico, on the other hand, had no illegal drugs-related records.
Defensor said they are looking into the possibility of road rage as one of the motives for Britanico’s killing.
The victim seemed to have figured in a verbal tussle with another motorist before the shooting incident happened.
Meanwhile, Defensor opted not to comment on the two incidents in the advent of the Dinagyang Festival celebration.
But he said he already ordered policemen to intensify their police visibility.
It was gathered that some Iloilo City personnel are currently deployed in Kalibo, Aklan for the Ati-Ativan Festival.
They are expected to return on Tuesday, Jan. 21, and will be officially deployed for the Dinagyang Festival on Thursday.