Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Monday said that many members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) are “simply out of control” after a police officer shot to death a mother and her son on Sunday in a disagreement over a holiday noisemaker.
In a statement, HRW deputy director in Asia Phil Robertson said the killing by Police Senior Master Sergeant Jonel Nuezca of Sonya Gregorio, 52, and her son Frank Anthony, 25, highlighted the prevailing attitude of impunity in the PNP.
“The grim news today of a police officer in Tarlac, in the northern Philippines, shooting to death a mother and her son over a dispute about the use of holiday noisemaker is just the latest incident to drive home this reality: many members of the Philippine police are simply out of control,” Robertson said.
Contrary to Interior Secretary Eduardo Año’s claim that the incident is an “isolated case,” HRW said that the killing is one of many incidents of police violence in the country.
“As with many incidents of recent police violence, the killing by Nuezca of Sonya Gregorio and her son Frank was brazen and underscores the impunity that prevails in the Philippines,” Robertson noted.
“It took place in the context of an enabling environment for police violence that President Duterte himself has encouraged,” he said.
The cop, Senior Master Sergeant Jonel Nuezca, is now under the custody of the Paniqui, Tarlac police after the killing of his neighbours.
Nuezca surrendered to the police after video of the killing was shared on social media which clearly shows his face.
Philippine National Police revealed that Nuezca has multiple records of administrative cases. (Source: INQUIRER.net)