Two charged for ex-kagawad’s slay

THE Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo) presents on Thursday the “three persons of interest” in the killing of former kagawad Fernando Toreno at Barangay Kumaliskis, Don Salvador Benedicto town. (Glazyl Y. Masculino photo)

By: Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – Murder charges were filed against two of the five suspects who killed former councilman Fernando Toreno of Barangay Kumaliskis, Don Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental last Aug 15, 2019.

Police Lieutenant Colonel Adrian Acollador, deputy provincial director for administration of Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo), said yesterday that a criminal complaint was filed on Aug 16 against George Larida, 32, and Junniver Nuñez, 27, both residents of Barangay Bagong Silang.

Acollador said the case was filed after witnesses identified the two suspects.

“The murder case is considered cleared, but investigation is still ongoing for the identification and arrest of the remaining suspects,” he added.

Larida and Nuñez were riding a motorcycle driven by Armando Larida, 42, of Barangay Bagong-Silang, when they were arrested at a police checkpoint in San Carlos City for possessing a .45-caliber pistol with five magazines and 30 rounds of live ammunition.

Police earlier considered them “persons of interest” behind Toreno’s killing after some witnesses identified them based on the clothes they were wearing and between the shooting and the time they were intercepted in San Carlos.

The Laridas and Nuñez denied the allegations against them, claiming that they were on their way to work when they were arrested by police.

Toreno, brother of an incumbent councilor in the town, was riding a motorcycle when he was gunned down by five assailants on board a red sports utility vehicle at Barangay Kumaliskis last week.

Police are looking into grudge as possible angle behind the killing, but police are still conducting deeper investigation to determine the specific motive.

Although they have statements of the witnesses, Acollador said they are still waiting for the results of the paraffin test.

He also said that they will continue to investigate if Armando really has involvement in the crime.

Armando is facing charges for illegal possession of firearm and ammunition.